As the grueling two-hour and 40-minute practice came to an end on Thursday, most of the players looked and felt exhausted. Running back Corey Clement, on the other hand, was raring to go. Clement has not seen live game action since last December in Dallas, before a knee injury put him on Injured Reserve. While this setback is part of his journey, Clement is ready to move forward and is locked in on making the most of Training Camp.
"I'm only worried about right now," Clement said. "Right now, I'm feeling 100 percent. I'm just waiting for them to take the leash off me so I can get back in the groove and worry about football."
Clement got a taste of the action as he participated in 7-on-7 drills for the first time in camp. He caught a quick pass from Clayton Thorson and made a juke move to the lose the defender, ultimately resulting in a touchdown. While these drills aren't equivalent to in-game action, Clement is satisfied with his progress and only expects his comfort level to increase.
"Team reps is really my next big step," Clement said. "Today was 7-on-7s and just getting more comfortable with everything. Getting my legs back, catching, and bursting downfield. Football shape is definitely different than rehab shape."
Last season, Clement's production helped the Eagles on offense and special teams. He totaled career highs in receptions with 22 as well as 192 receiving yards and 451 scrimmage yards. His effectiveness on special teams was highlighted by leading the team in kickoff return yards with 333. Clement's contribution in his shortened 2018 season, shows the potential he has for this year.
As the Glassboro, New Jersey native enters his third year in the league, he knows how crucial this season will be in returning to his best self. After going through an injury, Clement's perspective on the game has changed and the desire to be back on the field has only increased.
"Can't really take it for granted," Clement said. "Coach Pederson said it after practice, 'If you really think about the heat, feeling sorry for yourself, you're already putting yourself at a fault.' I'm just thinking about all these days, I have nothing really to complain about right now because I am happy. I'm back on my feet. I'm happy where I'm at in this position. Ready to get going."
Along with getting back to the game he loves, Clement is happy to be reunited with his teammates. He is going to cherish every moment he is able to line up with his brothers.
"Every day I even get to stretch with the team, that means a lot because I do so much on the side with rehab," Clement said. "I miss being in the huddle. I miss being a part of the scheme. Now I'm really not taking anything for granted. You really have to make the most of your opportunity."