In 2009, Browns linebacker D’Qwell Jackson suffered a torn left pectoral muscle, causing him to miss the final 10 games of the season. In training camp in 2010, Jackson suffered a torn right pectoral muscle, causing him to miss the entire season — and leading to speculation that Jackson’s career might be over.
But Jackson didn’t just return to the Browns this year. He came back with a vengeance, and today he’s been named the AFC Defensive Player of the Month for September.
In his first three games back after missing the previous 26 consecutive games with the two pectoral injuries, Jackson had 30 tackles, 2.5 sacks, one pass defensed, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery, helping the Browns go 2-1 in September.
A torn pectoral muscle is an absolutely brutal injury for anyone to suffer once, but to go through all the rehabilitation required to get back onto a football field, only to suffer another injury and have to go through the whole rehab process again, would be an unimaginably grueling process.
After returning to the field in Week One, Jackson said he was just thankful to be a football player again.
“With my history I’m just fortunate enough to be able to come out here every day and play football,” Jackson said. “When you’re out so long, you feel like you’re not a part of everything. It’s a great feeling that I hope never leaves, but I’m not looking for any personal accolades.”
Jackson has a personal accolade now. And he has to be considered the early favorite for another personal accolade, the NFL’s Comeback Player of the Year Award.