Like many Giants fans, when I saw the tweet last year that Terrell Thomas was out for the 2012 season with an ACL injury in the first week of preseason, my heart sank. Even a tear welled up as one is now just thinking about it. The Giants losing their top cornerback was hard enough, but it happening to the same guy for the second year in a row was a heart breaker.
Thomas suffered the same injury in the 2011 preseason, and vowed to make his return sooner than later. With an upbeat attitude on twitter and in the media, Thomas had the support of those around the Giants organization in making his recovery. Then the injury happened again, and everyone continued to rally around him, with Thomas seemingly never letting it get him down, always fueled by the conviction that he would one day return to the field.
And that day has finally come. Two years off the field, away from his teammates, stripped of his trade, Terrell Thomas was activated off the PUP list today.
In an interview on Giants.com, Thomas had this to say:
Q: After all you’ve been through, how big is this day for you?
A: This day is not big. This is the first day. It’s a starting point. It’s exciting. A lot of people have been rooting for me and I’m happy just to be in this position, and to be blessed to have another opportunity. But this is just day one. It’s a long road ahead of me, I know that. It’s going to be a…road, but I’m not afraid of it. Any challenge comes with a test. I just have to be prepared for it.
Q: When you first got hurt two years ago, you were on the verge of doing good things in this league. Two years later now, having not played, what do you think you can still be as a defensive back?
A: Only God can answer that. I’ve worked really hard. My numbers are not too far off. I’ve been training hard. My upper body is a lot stronger to really help me out in my press or my technique. If I lost a step, who knows how my body’s going to respond. But as far as training with other athletes, until I get out there on the field, I truly don’t know what I can do. But testing-wise, I’m pretty much at 100%.
Trying to take a step back, and view this comeback from the scope of an unbiased fan, I can still honestly say that Thomas’ road to recovery has been nothing short of amazing, and that the man is a true warrior. He sets an example for those in sports as well as those who aren’t, that no matter how big the obstacles, any challenge can be accomplished with a patience and a positive attitude.