After missing the first three games of the season due to surgery on his broken foot, Jets linebacker Calvin Pace may be ready to take the field this weekend in Buffalo.
The first hints that Pace may be ready for the gridiron — just one month removed from surgery — came last week when he began putting full pressure on his foot while running during practice. He went through a few drills while team doctors and head coach Rex Ryan called his recovery process "extraordinary."
"Calvin's doing great," Ryan said during Jets practice last week, according to ESPN.com. "He's way ahead of where most people are at this time."
Pace credits his quick healing to workouts he completed before going full strength on his foot. In addition to working out in the water, Pace has also worked with a treadmill that places the lower half of the athlete's body in a bubble. The technology reduced the weight placed on Pace's foot from 265 pounds to 130 pounds and as he became more comfortable with the workout, weight was gradually added.
Not only did these workouts aid Pace's physical improvement, but his mental approach as well.
"Takes some of the strain off your foot and build it up in your mind, 'I can do this,' " Pace said. "Luckily I'm in a team with state of the art stuff. Ten days after my surgery I was doing some stuff."
Ryan seems confident that Pace will return to play this weekend against the Bills. If he doesn't start as a regular on the defensive line, he could play as a situational option. Considering the Bills are 0-3 this season — compared to the Jets 2-1 record – Ryan may want to air on the side of caution in using Pace in full force.
The Jets' administration was not as optimistic about the return of cornerback Darrelle Revis. Revis has not played since pulling his hamstring trying to cover a Randy Moss catch in the endzone two weeks ago, and Ryan does not want to rush the injury.
"You almost have to be 100 percent, or right at 100 percent, to play corner or you're going to be having to face this the whole season," Ryan said. "Hopefully, we can have him this week. If not, we have to find a way to get it done."
Kyle Wilson has been serving as the replacement in Revis' absence.