In the 14th season of his career, veteran safety DeAngelo Hall is getting closer to a return to the playing field after beginning to practice last week as he remains on the PUP list for now.
Longtime Redskins safety DeAngelo Hall made his return to the practice field last week as he remains on the Reserve/Physically Unable To Perform (PUP) list, marking the first time all season that he has seen the practice field.
Hall, who tore his ACL in a Week 3 matchup against the New York Giants last season, has sat out an early portion of this season at the recommendation of Dr. James Andrews. This extra time off to recover and get fully healthy has been worthwhile, says Hall, who still does not have an exact return date scheduled.
"It's been interesting, it's been different. I've never been on PUP, so I kind of didn't know really what to expect," Hall said. "But, it's definitely given my body a chance to really heal."
More than a year has passed since Hall's injury, which is a bit longer than the standard recovery time for a torn ACL. However, considering his age and tenure, it is understandable why doctors insisted he take it slow.
Check out the top images of DeAngelo Hall from the 2015 season.
"I felt like I probably could have been back a lot earlier," Hall noted. "But, I think sound advice from the doctors was to just wait as long as we could and really give it a chance to heal and give myself a chance to be successful and to go out there really pain-free. I've followed their instructions to a tee and I feel great."
As for his current status, Hall was not shy to say that he is feeling just fine on the practice field. Despite the upbeat tune about his health, patience is still a key virtue in returning from a torn ACL.
"I think all the coaches and players are kind of mesmerized at how well I'm moving, and I'm like 'I feel good, I've felt good for a while now.' So, I'm not surprised," Hall said. "I'm ready to roll whenever my number's called."
In his time off from playing, Hall adapted to somewhat of a coaching role for the Redskins' defense. Despite the knowledge he might have to offer to the young defensive players on this roster, coaching simply is not for him, the veteran explained.
"I hated it. Seriously," Hall said with a smile. "I was one of those guys that still feels like they can do it, so why am I over here? You get some coaches like that sometimes that tell you all the time about what their story is, instead of, 'Alright man, we are trying to win a game, we don't want to hear about you doing this in the '80's.' And so, I felt like one of those guys."
In his absence, the Redskins secondary has generally been able to hold its own, thanks in part to a slew of younger guys stepping up and filling the roles of injured players. So far this season, young secondary members Kendall Fuller and Montae Nicholson have combined for six passes defended and three interceptions, including Fuller's game-sealing pick against the 49ers two weeks ago.
"We always preach about this is a brotherhood, a family and you want to see your brother do good, whether they're taking your spot or not, I want to see Montae go out and make plays," Hall said of his defensive teammates. "And so, to watch our guys really grasp it and understand it and learn it and just embrace the challenge, it's been amazing to watch. I told them that Oakland game was one of the best games I've ever seen in 14 years."
Hall is the longest-tenured player on the Redskins, entering his 10th season with the franchise after spending the first four years of his career in Atlanta and Oakland. The three-time Pro Bowler has crafted one of the best careers of any defensive back in recent years, leading all active players in interceptions and fumbles returned for a touchdown while being tied for first in non-offensive touchdowns.
Hall noted that the remainder of the 2017 season could wind up being his last go around, which would be the cap on what has been a remarkable career.
"It was difficult to just sit around and wait and watch, but it wasn't a difficult decision when it came to just 'Hey, this could possibly be my last chance to go out and make a difference,'" Hall said.