Miami Dolphins’ Mike Pouncey: Playing all 16 games is ‘big middle finger’ to all who doubted me

Mike Pouncey. (Photo by Joe Skipper/Getty Images)

DAVIE — Dolphins center Mike Pouncey left nothing to the imagination when he described how much playing all 16 games this season means to him.

“It means everything,” Pouncey said Friday. “All the hard work, it’ll prove that it paid off. All the doubters, the people that doubted me, it’ll be a big middle finger to them.”

Pouncey, 28, hasn’t played a full season since 2012 because of a series of injuries that included hip surgery, but will reach Game 16 Sunday when the Dolphins play host to the Buffalo Bills.

Pouncey played only five games last season, so getting through an entire season was no sure thing. For his ability to do so, Pouncey has been named recipient of the team’s Ed Block Courage Award for 2017.

“It’s a great honor to be recognized for it, but 16 is the only thing that’s on my mind, to be honest with you,” he said. “Get through Sunday, have my best game of the year and go from there.”

Asked how many people he thought doubted him, Pouncey started counting reporters gathered around him.

“One, two, three, four, five, six, seven … ,” he said.

Told that he appears to be carrying a chip on his shoulder, Pouncey said, “I’m going to have one for the rest of my career. I just want to prove all you wrong. That simple.”

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