Redskins tight end Chris Cooley said the knee injury that limited him to five games last season is completely healed and that he’s able to run “full speed” for the first time in long time.
“Everything feels good,” Cooley said Thursday after the first morning walk through of training camp at Redskins Park. “I took my time this offseason coming back from how I felt last year. I slowly worked into running harder and harder. Whatever level I was at, as soon as there was no problem, I advanced to another level.”
“I feel good now,” the 30-year-old Redskins’ mainstay added. “I have no concerns. I’m running at full speed right now. I spend no time in the training room.”
Returning to full health couldn’t come at a more critical time for Cooley, who was limited to a career-low eight receptions for 65 yards in 2011. He’s been passed on the depth chart by Fred Davis, and figures to come under pressure from converted wide receiver Niles Paul for the backup role.
Cooley also carries a salary cap hit of $6.23 million.
Although it would be hard to imagine a Redskins’ roster without Cooley, he’s taking nothing for granted as he prepares to enter his ninth season in Washington.
“One of the things that’s going to make this team good is there is so much competition at every position,” he said. “I’m excited about competition at the tight end position. It [makes] guys step up and perform under pressure, because they have to perform under pressure every day in practice.”