LONDON—The Dolphins’ maintenance plan for Pro Bowl center Mike Pouncey is working well—“phenomenally,” as he put it. He worked a very limited schedule in the preseason, takes every Thursday off of practice and has been feeling great in the games.
He’s thankful for that. Every snap he plays after making it through just five games last year means something to him.
There’s also an appreciation of the fact that his hip issues are a threat to ultimately cut his career short. Pouncey, 28, revealed today that doctors have told him hip replacement surgery is inevitable in the next 5-10 years.
If it reaches that stage, it seems certain his career would be finished.
“We’ll see,” he said. “I can’t predict the future. I’m listening to a doctor tell me that. I feel like right now I need I’ll need one. We’ll see.”
In the meantime, the reduced workload is helping.
While he was initially a little uneasy with the idea of missing practice time, particularly in training camp and the preseason, Pouncey said he’s gotten used to it. The only real change in the regular season is the Dolphins hold him out of Thursday practices.
While he’s not thrilled about that routine, the fact that he feels good now makes it worth it.
“I’m out there watching what’s going on; It’s not like I’m sitting inside not seeing what’s going on, so I’m back there just taking mental notes,” Pouncey said. “I know this is the best thing for my health, not only for right now but for my whole rest of my career.
“I’m gonna be smart about it because I know they’ve got a great plan in place. It’d be dumb for me to go out here and be like, ‘Let’s just go, go, go,’ and then it hurts me in the long run. Right now we’re just sticking to the plan, and it’s worked so far.”
[PHOTO GALLERY: Live images from Dolphins-Saints tilt in London]
Check out The Palm Beach Post‘s Miami Dolphins page on Facebook