UW Pro Day - O'Brien Schofield

Defensive End O'Brien Schofield says he will play this season, and that the rehab on his torn ACL is coming along.

O'Brien Schofield -

Schofield talks about the injury with reporters

Get us up to date. How was the surgery?

Schofield: Surgery was five weeks ago. I'm doing well, I'm walking around. I was off crutches 10 days after the surgery, rehabbing twice a day and staying off my leg as much as possible. I'm doing a lot of mobility stuff and pool workouts. I'm watching a lot of films to stay mentally fit and physically fit. I just started working back out, training really hard with Ben Herbert. He put a program together for me. I lost a lot of weight during my surgery time so he's trying to get all that back. I'm getting these visits that teams are giving me to go out there and show what I can do.

Everybody around here said, 'Man, did he get screwed. What a bad thing to have happen.' But it seems like your attitude is pretty incredible, all things consider.

Schofield: Yeah, I mean, it's no reason to be down because life is not over. I've seen a lot of guys tear their ACL and come back to be a better player and be that much more explosive. It depends on the person. It depends on how mentally tough you are and it depends on how hard you work at your injury to come back and be a player.

A year ago when you looked at this day, this isn't the way you envisioned going through it, is it?

Schofield: Definitely not. I envisioned all 32 teams being here, all eyes on me and me just showing up and being an athletic guy and wowing some people with some testing times.

Are you talking to guys at all today? Any of the scouts? Are you doing anything?

Schofield: I'm going to talk to them when I get a chance. I didn't want to interrupt the flow of things right now. That's these guys time to show what they can do and possibly get their chance to play ball.

With this injury, would that make it even more gratifying if and when you do make it to say you came back from this so close to when you were supposed to be drafted?

Schofield: Yes. Life is full of adversity and I've been through a lot since I've been here at Wisconsin. It is just another bump in the road. To come back from this and get drafted, wherever I'm, at I'll be happy just knowing that I got a chance to show what I can do in the National Football League.

Are you pretty certain that you'll be drafted somewhere?

Schofield: I would like to say that, but you never know. It all depends on what team needs are and what they want. I feel that my film from last year and from the East-West Shrine game and just my character and my interviews should really keep me pretty high and draftable.

How have those interviews been going?

Schofield: They've been going really well. When I was at the combine, guys just really wanted to pick my brain and see how mentally tough I was about my injury. How hard was I going to work to get back and how smart I was as a football player. A lot of the chalk talks were very interesting because they were unexpected.

Coaches were like, ‘OK, turn around.' My film was up there and I had to explain the defense. It was a nice process.

A lot of people say that's a pretty important part of the process. I take it you kind of got a grasp that?

Schofield: Oh yeah. Knowing that I couldn't do nothing physical, I knew my mental presentation had to be the best there. That's how I approached it. Every interview, I was going to give them my best, be honest and let them know exactly what they're going to get in O'Brien Schofield if they draft me. People have said the fit in Green Bay would be pretty good. How strong and legitimate do you think their interest is at this point? Is it hard to gauge that and do you think it would be a good fit?

Schofield: I have no idea what the interest is, but it wouldn't be a far move to move my stuff. Just being able to get an opportunity to play in that scheme, the 3-4 scheme, which a lot of people see me as an outside linebacker, it would be good. But wherever I get drafted, whether it's a 4-3 scheme, playing defensive end, outside linebacker, cornerback, whatever they want me to do, I'll do it.

Did you surprise yourself with how well you played at linebacker in the East-West Shrine game?

Schofield: To be honest with you, no, I wasn't. After this year, I really realized my potential as a player and what I can do. I'm an athletic guy. If a guy shows me what to do, I'm going to work at it until I get it. Just having one week of learning linebacker under my belt, I felt like I did pretty good. Just imagining having OTA's, Mini-Camp and after fall camp to play the position, I think I'll be very good at it.

Any specific teams express more interest in you than others?

Schofield: I mean, I would think so just because of the people I interviewed with at the combine. You really never know. Some guys are probably interested but don't want to show their cards type thing. So you've just got to take it one grain at a time.

Have you ruled out playing this year? Do you think that's a possibility?

Schofield: I'm playing this year. I'm going to play this year. I know that I can. The way that I'm progressing right now in my rehab, Dr. Andrews told me six months, full recovery and possibly being able to do non-contact things in mini-camp. But honestly, if I don't feel right, I won't force it because I don't want to re-injure myself.

I really feel that I can play and a lot of teams talked to me about PUP (Physically Unable to Perform) and giving me that extra six weeks to really get a full recovery to my ACL tear.

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