Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Making Up for Lost Time; Joeckel's Injured Ankle Holding Up Well; Bradley Encouraged by OTAs

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Making Up for Lost Time; Joeckel's Injured Ankle Holding Up Well; Bradley Encouraged by OTAs

Article excerpt

Byline: Hays Carlyon

Jaguars left tackle Luke Joeckel will have a plate and two wire ties in his right ankle for the rest of his life.

But the 22-year-old Joeckel is ready to let the broken ankle that ended his rookie season in the fifth game become a distant memory.

"It's done," Joeckel said. "I'm trying to throw it out of my mind. I've just got to play football now at a fast and strong level. I can't think of myself as an injured, pathetic guy."

Joeckel, the second-overall pick in the 2013 draft, took a major step in his recovery this week. He competed in all three practices of organized team activities.

"I was pleased with how my ankle held up," Joeckel said. "This week was very important to me. I didn't know how it would be pushing off and going against another guy. I felt like I was moving really well. Overall, I thought it was a good first week, even if I had no injury."

Joeckel will meet with Jaguars head athletic trainer Scott Trulock on Friday to discuss the next progression. The 6-foot-6, 306-pound Joeckel said he took the first two snaps of every first-team drill over the three days and is looking to increase his load when OTAs resume Monday.

"I had no problems at all this week," Joeckel said. "It felt good. Hopefully, we can keep increasing it until I can take every rep."

Jaguars coach Gus Bradley described Joeckel's progress this week as really good. He said he had a productive talk with Joeckel in the training room after Wednesday's practice.

"He feels like the speed of the game has really slowed down for him compared to last OTAs," Bradley said. "He feels really confident. He feels really comfortable in the situation and now it's just the number of reps and getting his technique down."

Joeckel does have a significant amount of lost time to try and overcome.

He missed one preseason game and over a week of practice in training camp with a hip injury.aThen, his season ended less than one quarter after taking over for traded Eugene Monroe at left tackle in a loss at St. Louis on Oct. 6.

Joeckel logged 272 snaps out of a possible 1,056 last season. …

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