Jeffery Simmons is 15 months removed from tearing the anterior crucicate ligament in his left knee. He played nine games last season, including seven starts, as a rookie.
He expects to be even better this season, because his knee is even better.
The defensive lineman has continued to rehab with Titans strength coach Frank Piraino and head medical man Todd Toriscelli during the COLVID-19 pandemic.
Simmons, 22, said he has gained extension in his leg he was lacking while building strength in his quad. He expects all the work to pay off despite not having an offseason of on-field work for a second consecutive year.
“I work drills. I work out every day,” Simmons said on a video call with beat reporters Wednesday, via Paul Kuharsky of paulkuharsky.com. “I work hands. I work pass-rushing moves. I’m still working out and doing the things I need to do to sharpen my game up. I don’t feel like we’ve got to be going against another man, an offensive lineman.
“Like this past weekend, I worked out with a defensive lineman guy. We just worked pass rush moves and hand stuff.”
Simmons, a first-round draft pick, has lost 10 pounds from the 320 he weighed in his return in Week Seven last season. He wants to play at 300-305.
But his knee rehab is the No. 1 priority.
“Every day that I am going into the building, it’s just the same mentality — continue to get my knee in the best shape I can for the season,” Simmons said. “That’s pretty much what it is.”