New Orleans Saints outside linebacker Will Smith says he is raring to make his comeback from injury as soon as possible.
Smith tore his anterior cruciate ligament back in August and has been in rehabilitation ever since.
The 32-year-old was placed on the injured reserve list but as he tries to return to full fitness, says he is determined to make it back and not be forced into retirement.
Speaking at a charity event for his "Where There's a Will There's a Way" foundation, he said: "First step is, I've got to get healthy, running around doing the things I do, and after that I'll be back," he said. "I'll be back as long as the Saints want me back. ... I want to play until I don't want to play anymore, until it becomes something not desirable for me."
When asked about being placed on the injured-reserve list, the 10-year veteran said: "I didn't really know how to take it in.
"But life is a struggle, you have good struggles and bad struggles and this is one of the bad struggles. I figure I have to work through it and do my best and good things will come out of it."
Smith has played a total of 139 games for the Saints and has led quarterback takedowns for his club over the last four seasons.