Few can imagine suffering three ACL injuries to the same knee. Even fewer can come back from them and play at an NFL level. But that’s what Panthers linebacker Thomas Davis did last year and has Terrell Thomas inspired to do the same in 2013.
Thomas, who recently signed a new contract with the Giants for the upcoming season, would receive weekly messages from Davis as he started 12 of 15 games in 2012 for Carolina, racking up 105 tackles, an interception and two forced fumbles.
“I told him, ‘Don’t give up on your dream, believe in yourself and continue to fight,’” recalled Davis, who tore his ACL in 2009, 2010, and 2011, in a phone interview this week, according to The Star-Ledger’s Jenny Vrentas. “’I’m living proof, and I’m going to do whatever I can each and every week to show you that it is possible. If you continue to work hard and believe in what you can do, then you’ll be in the same position that I was in.’”
Meanwhile, Thomas is currently rehabbing at the Andrews Institute for Orthopedic and Sports Medicine near Pensacola, Fla., trying to return to the field for the first time since the final week of 2010.
“It’s one thing to have confidence when you’re not playing, and it’s a totally different thing to have confidence when you are out there and you’re in the fire,” Davis said. “But play after play after play, you become comfortable with your surroundings and everything that’s going on, and you stop worrying about that knee.”
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