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Pinkston: 'It's great to be back'

Posted Oct 16, 2013

Cleveland Browns offensive lineman Jason Pinkston returned to practice Wednesday after missing the first six weeks of the regular season with an ankle injury.

Cleveland Browns right guard Jason Pinkston had worked his way back from blood clots that threatened his football career after the sixth game of the 2012 regular season and was working himself into the rotation at right guard when he again suffered an injury earlier this year.

In the Browns’ 24-6 win over the Detroit Lions in the second preseason game in August, Pinkston suffered an ankle sprain and missed the next eight weeks, but that stopped Wednesday.

He has returned to the practice field and is eligible to be activated off of the reserve/injury-designated-for-return list in two weeks. Pinkston said he feels like he can help what he considers an already productive offensive line.

“It’s great, man, just to get back out there and get some work in, work with the guys again, get back on the field and earn a paycheck,” Pinkston said. “It can’t come fast enough. It’s been a long two months, and I’m just happy it’s over with and in the past. We’ve got some good things going on here. I just want to be a part of the action and get involved with it.

“I think I can help out a lot. They’ve been doing a great job in the pass game and run game. Everything’s starting to come together, and everyone’s starting to jell together. I’m just hoping I can get in some action and help out the guys as much as I can.”

Suffering the ankle injury was initially tough to handle because of the journey Pinkston had taken to get to that point where he was back on the football field.

“It was kind of frustrating just because I was getting a good rhythm of making the switch to right guard, and then, you get banged up,” Pinkston said. “That’s how it happens. The only thing I can do is just move on.

“Someone fell on me. That’s what happens up in the trenches. Up front, people are falling into you. This one was a little different because I knew I was coming back from it. I knew I would be able to play, but with the blood clot, the career was kind of up in the air.”

Although he was frustrated with the setback, Pinkston learned an important lesson during his extended time away from the football field, and it is something that will stay with him long after his playing career is over.

“You’ve just got to be mentally tough,” Pinkston said. “If you have the right mindset, you can get through anything that God throws your way. I just took a lot of time, focused on myself and got closer to God, was doing the right things and tried to make myself a better person and a better player.”