Former LSU linebacker Damone Clark has a pretty good reason to be doubly thankful to the Dallas Cowboys. Not only was it Dallas’ medical staff who initially called to inform him of his herniated disc that would require surgery, but the Cowboys were also the team who ended up making his NFL dreams come true when they drafted him in the fifth-round of the 2022 NFL draft.
It’s a little eerie the way everything turned out. Call it fate or just plain dumb luck, but the union between these two seems as if it was almost meant to be. While everyone concerned, the Dallas Cowboys and Damone Clark, would’ve preferred to hit the ground running like other rookies entering the league this year, that sadly isn’t the case. Everybody is in a wait-and-see pattern right now not knowing if/when Clark will be able to suit up in 2022.
While he waits to get the green light from the Cowboys medical staff after having spinal fusion surgery, all Damone Clark can do right now is do his best sponge imitation and soak up any and all information he can in practices. If rookie minicamp is any indication as to where his mindset is, he will be mentally ready to go when he’s finally cleared to participate in the physical part of the game.
Cowboys rookie LB Damone Clark (spinal fusion surgery) is still months away from being medically cleared to practice. But you can learn a lot about him the way he watches position drills. Clark mirrored the footwork and hand-usage techniques he observed. Mental reps. pic.twitter.com/0DTcssEHXI— Michael Gehlken (@GehlkenNFL) May 13, 2022
It’s really encouraging to see Clark being so involved after he plummeted to outside of the top 50 where he was expected to go in the draft and slid all the way down to the Dallas Cowboys in the fifth round. He could’ve easily moped around and felt sorry for himself, but instead, he seems to be embracing the obstacle, tackling it head-on so to speak. It’s something that hasn’t gone unnoticed by Dallas’ coaching staff.
Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy said staff has been impressed with rookie LB Damone Clark’s “engagement and understanding.” Also done well in strength and conditioning. On timeline for Clark coming off spinal fusion surgery: “He won’t play too early. I’ll just say that.“ pic.twitter.com/cokpE4CMUK— Michael Gehlken (@GehlkenNFL) May 14, 2022
So far, so good for the Cowboys rookie LB. It’s still really early, but Clark is definitely making the right impression by doing all he can do right now to prepare himself for when he’s finally given the green light. It’s exciting knowing the kind of physically tough player he was at LSU and now seeing his mental toughness now.
There’s still a lot that needs to happen between now and when he’s finally back to 100%, making the timetable unknown as to when he could actually play, but he’s definitely doing all he can right now to prepare himself for when that moment does arrive. If that doesn’t make you want to root even more for the guy to succeed, I don’t know what will.
So, with a little bit of good luck and no setbacks with his rehab, we could very well see Damone Clark suit up for the Dallas Cowboys in 2022. When that may be is anyone’s guess, but one things for sure, don’t bet against him being ready both mentally and physically when that happens based on the way he’s handling things early on.