Seminole trainers plan to keep a close eye on impact players such as defensive tackles Darnell Dockett and Travis Johnson and senior receivers Anquan Boldin and Robert Morgan. However, others also will attract their share of attention as well, including defensive backs Leroy Smith and Jerome Carter.
Trainers and players must deal with a delicate balancing act of stressing conditioning but limiting stress as they continue their rehabilitation. However, it should be stressed the Seminoles' injured are on pace to be ready for the start of practice.
"For the most part we still have another month to go and we still have a lot of work to do and a lot of worries we need to address," FSU assistant trainer David Walls said Tuesday afternoon. "The kids just need to get focused and get more compliant and do everything we ask them to do."
FSU's training staff also will have some changes this season. Assistant trainer Duane Brooks has left to join the New Orleans Saints' staff. Also, assistant trainer Sam Lunt, who handles the men's basketball team, will have hip replacement surgery next month. Head trainer Randy Oravetz is on vacation before returning next week.
With the start of the second summer semester this week, player turnout for weight-training sessions and afternoon workouts has been good, according to strength coach Jon Jost. This also means a busy time for the Seminoles' training staff, which continues to use its makeshift facility at old Florida High School for the next month before returning to their previous space beneath Doak Campbell Stadium.
Here's a quick rundown on the status of FSU's injured, including defensive back Bryant McFadden. McFadden suffered a fractured right hand during Monday's workout when, in apparent frustration, slapped a light pole during passing drills on the practice field.
Darnell Dockett (bone spur) Dockett continues to experience slight soreness and swelling in his right Achilles heel, which has limited his running progression. He did jog on the sidelines during workouts Monday and Tuesday on the practice field. Dockett's left knee is fine following his Gator Bowl injury.
Travis Johnson (ankle) and Bobby Meeks (ankle): Both players had similar surgeries (tendon replacement) and both are progressing slowly. Meeks, in fact, was working on resistance training and on a balance board Tuesday afternoon. Both are working on their running progression and will need aquatic work, which will emphasize conditioning and limit stress on their ankles.
Anquan Boldin and Robert Morgan: Boldin's progress has been excellent. He attended Chris Carter's speed camp and was quite impressive. Boldin will test on the Cybex machine (strength measurement) later this week or early next week.
Morgan's progress hasn't been quite as swift due to post-op complications. Morgan had a 31-percent deficit on his recent strength test and continues to experience stiffness and some swelling. Still, he's expected to be cleared by the start of practice, though his practice schedule could be modified. Morgan has been one of the injured's most diligent workers.
Jerome Carter (knee) and Leroy Smith (knee): Both are progressing following surgery. They are scheduled to be tested (strength) Wednesday morning. Trainers indicated both needed to be "compliant" in their rehabilitation -- they need to continue to work, in other words.
Others also are progressing nicely. Sophomore tight tackle Ray Willis continues to receive treatment for tendonitis (left knee). Redshirt offensive lineman Blake Williams is undergoing a double-dose of rehab following back and knee surgeries.
Senior defensive tackle Tony Benford is doing well following surgery to remove scar tissue from his finger. Defensive back Bryant McFadden (foot) is on a running program, while linebacker Kendyll Pope (shoulder) and defensive end Willie Jones (knee) are progressing.
Additionally, backup quarterback Fabian Walker recently underwent nasal surgery, which is expected to help his conditioning. Walker, who missed Tuesday's workout with a headache, had trouble with his stamina during matt drills. Also, reserve offensive lineman Andrew Henry-Kennon suffered an ankle sprain playing basketball and has been fitted with a walking boot and is on crutches. Defensive end Alonzo Jackson has returned to lifting (specific drills) following wrist surgery (bone spur).
Incoming freshman Pat Watkins of Tallahassee Lincoln also is scheduled for his physical Wednesday morning and could be cleared to join his teammates later in the day.