Packers defensive lineman Johnny Jolly’s NFL career appeared to be over when he was suspended by the NFL and sent to prison on drug charges. But Jolly is back, says he has turned his life around, and was on the field Friday night for the preseason opener against the Cardinals — his first NFL game since 2009.
Jolly said afterward that it was a thrill to get another chance at football.
“I can’t explain the feeling that it was, but it was an awesome feeling,” Jolly said. “It’s been three long years, and now I’m back here. I’m just going to continue to push.”
Jolly did have one regret after the game: He just missed sacking Cardinals quarterback Drew Stanton.
“I should’ve had that play,” Jolly said. “I don’t know, man. It was just one of those plays, I should have had it. I missed out on it.”
Jolly is no lock to make the Packers’ 53-man roster, but if he can get into shape he could be a pleasant surprise to the Packers’ defense. And no matter where he goes from here, just by making it back onto an NFL field he has come a lot further than many thought he ever would.