Jadeveon Clowney is still waiting to get medically cleared to participate in training camp for the Houston Texans.
The No. 1 overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft had sports hernia surgery in mid-June and hasn't been given the OK by the Texans medical staff to resume workouts with the team, who are set to open camp on Saturday.
Clowney is expected to be a force as an outside linebacker in the Texans 3-4 defense, complementing defensive end J.J. Watt to give Houston a nifty 1-2 pass-rushing punch.
Eager to Return
But for now, the waiting is hardest part for Clowney. He is eager to get going once camps begins, but knows that he will leave the "when" up to the training staff.
I’m going to try,” Clowney told Brian Smith of the Houston Chronicle “That’s the goal, to try to get back. But I don’t know for sure right now. I’m going to let (the trainers) decide.”
Clowney doesn't want to get behind in learning how to play linebacker in the NFL, something he didn't do in college. Defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel has already said that nothing will be given to Clowney, and that his starting position must be earned.
Clowney revealed he played with the sports hernia at South Carolina last season, which may be one reason for his decline in production from his stellar 2012 season.
As a sophomore, Clowney set the school single-season record for sacks (13.0) and tackles for loss (23.5). He also had 54 tackles (40 solo) and 3 forced fumbles. As a junior last season, Clowney finished with 35 tackles -- 10.5 for a loss of yardage--and three quarterback sacks and missed one game because of injury.
Houston doesn't seem to be too concerned that Clowney will miss much time once camp opens, even if he isn't ready. The team did not place Clowney on the PUP list (physically unable to perform), meaning they expect him to be available to participate in practice.