JACKSONVILLE – Aaron Colvin never lost faith.
That wasn’t easy approaching the NFL Draft with a serious injury, but the words of Jaguars Head Coach Gus Bradley? They helped.
Colvin, a cornerback from Oklahoma, sustained a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee in late January at the Senior Bowl, where Bradley coached the South team along with the rest of the Jaguars’ coaching staff. Bradley pulled him aside at the NFL Scouting Combine a month later.
“I’m gonna come get you,” Bradley told Colvin.
The Jaguars did just that early Saturday afternoon, using a fourth-round selection in the 2014 NFL Draft – the No. 114 overall selection – on a player many considered a second-round selection before the injury.
“It’s just a blessing,” Colvin said.
Colvin (6-feet-0, 192 pounds), selected with a selection acquired last season in a trade with the Baltimore Ravens for left tackle Eugene Monroe, likely will start training camp on the Physically Unable to Perform list. That means he likely will miss the first six games of the regular season.
He will be reevaluated after that, and the Jaguars believe he could play and contribute in the latter part of his rookie season. Colvin had surgery a week after the injury.
“The main thing was just getting this knee right,” Colvin said Saturday. “I know I can play with the best of them and that’s what I’m going to do when I get to Jacksonville. I had to get my head right and I did and now it’s time to compete.”
Colvin said he is on schedule in his rehabilitation, and that he began running about two weeks ago with some light backpedaling. He said his physician, James Andrews, said he expects him to be able to practice in some capacity in training camp.
“The next thing is to start cutting,” he said. “Once I do that I’m ready to go. … I’m ready to do whatever they need me to do. I know when my time comes I’ll be ready to contribute to the team and I will be a playmaker.”
Colvin, a two-time All Big 12 selection while starting 23 games at corner in is final two collegiate seasons, also started 12 games at strong safety as a sophomore.
“You’re going to get a lockdown corner,” he said. “I can play nickel. I can play corner. I can play safety. But I feel when you have me on the outside at corner, I’m going to lock down whoever you give me. That’s my mindset. I’m a true competitor. I’m going to bring that fire to a secondary.
“I like to play off as well, so I can sit on a route and anticipate what’s coming.”
Colvin said he was on his way to meet with the New York Giants at the combine when Bradley pulled him aside.
“He was like, ‘We still love you. I’m going to come get you,’” Colvin said. “He was like, ‘You can bank on that.’ I didn’t really think about it too much, then they called me. I love that organization, so I’m thrilled to get picked by them.”
Colvin said his lowest point since the injury came Friday, when he didn’t get selected in Rounds 2 or 3.
“I was disappointed when I saw some of the guys go before me, but that’s part of the draft and part of life,” he said.
He said when his phone rang Saturday he saw the 904 area code and knew it was a Florida number.
“Right when I got that Florida call, I had a feeling it was them,” he said. “When it was, I was thrilled. Words can’t describe it.”