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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Fast Healer

Reidel Anthony says this is the longest recovery time he’s ever experienced, but he’s recovering quickly from his sprained ankle


WR Reidel Anthony participated in the voluntary summer workouts until an ankle injury on June 11 put him on the sideline

Before the final rookie pre-camp workout got underway on Friday morning, as a few first-year defensive backs walked through formations on the far field behind One Buccaneer Place, a single veteran put the near field to use.

Wide receiver Reidel Anthony, who suffered a left ankle sprain on June 11, ran nearly pain-free through a set of drills set up by Head Trainer Todd Toriscelli, then spent another 15 minutes catching passes from the 'Juggs' gun.

It was a very encouraging morning for player and team. Anthony sustained his ankle injury on the first day of the last week of voluntary summer workouts, coming down hard while trying to catch a deep pass. At the time, his recovery was expected to jeopardize the beginning of training camp for Anthony, and even as recently as last Monday Head Coach Tony Dungy expected to start camp without the fifth-year receiver in gear.

That may still be true, but Anthony's absence should be a short one. In fact, Toriscelli is confident Anthony could practice on Monday, the first day of camp, even if that's not the plan. Anthony may be held out of the first few workouts in order to make sure he's in no danger of a setback. That's fine with Anthony, even though he's itching to get back on the field.

"I'm just taking it stride, like Todd tells me," said Anthony on Friday. "I'm doing whatever they tell me to do. I've never been hurt this long before. It was getting frustrating knowing that camp was coming around soon. I've never missed the first day of camp, and hardly ever a single practice."

Toriscelli described the likely plan of holding Anthony out for a few workouts as 'precautionary.' There's a chance that Anthony could experience lingering soreness if he returns to soon, which could then limit him for other practices.

"It's been kind of tough," said Anthony, "but there's no sense in rushing back and coming in 70 or 80 percent when I can take my time, come in 100 percent and produce."

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