Word got out this offseason that Trent Cole had been dealing with a right hand injury for over a year, and had surgery to address the issue. He filled in some blanks while talking to the media on Wednesday.
“It was an injury I actually had — two years ago it happened to me,” said Cole. “But I kept playing with it and finally it snapped in half and I had to get some surgery. I played through the season with it.”
Snapped what, a tendon?
“I tore tendons and everything. I snapped a bone and a tendon, right at the joint. The surgery went fine to help me get some movement in my hand and go from there.”
The veteran noted that he has played through plenty of injuries that were never made public, and didn’t cite the hand ailment as the lone cause for his down season. He said there were a multitude of reasons for “the first bad year” that he had ever had.
“I’ll straight up tell you I had a bad year,” said Cole. “And it’s not going to happen again.”
Cole appears healthy, and is also leaner. His normal playing weight is around 270, but said he is now close to his goal of 260 pounds. Is that a sign that he is moving to outside linebacker? He said that he is dropping into coverage some and “trying different things.” It sounds like they are very much in the experimental period, as Chip Kelly has suggested.
“We don’t know where we’re going to be at right now,” said Cole.
He did make the point that, in his opinion, a stand-up rusher has a big jump on his opponent compared to one with his hand in the dirt. Perhaps that’s a hint worth taking note of.
There is a big transition underway at NovaCare, especially for guys like Cole who are dealing with not just a coaching change but a potential position change as well. But the 30-year-old sounded energized. And he is not buying into the idea that he is a player in decline.
“Come on now. I’m not done yet,” said Cole. “I got some years in me, and I look forward to having some great years here coming up.”
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