Gonzalez resists thinking what could be

February, 2, 2010
2/02/10
3:52
PM ET
MIAMI -- Anthony Gonzalez looked uncomfortable, as you’d expect.

Gonzalez
Gonzalez
He suffered a knee injury in the first quarter of the season's first game, and he’s been a spectator ever since. He was supposed to be the young receiver who carved out a bigger niche and became a reliable target for Peyton Manning.

But as he’s rehabilitated, he’s watched his friends Pierre Garcon and Austin Collie do the job and heard the questions about next year. With Gonzalez healthy, the Colts should have an embarrassment of riches for Manning with Reggie Wayne, Dallas Clark, Garcon, and Collie.

“I’m feeling a lot better, the rehab has been a lot longer than I would have liked, but it’s getting stronger every day, I’m getting better every day and I feel very, very confident about next year,” he said.

I asked him about the difficult dynamic of rooting for the team and wishing the other receivers well versus the temptation to think about how that should be or could be him.

“They are getting what they deserve, they are performing exactly how they prepare and exactly how they practice, which is always nice to see,” he said. “I think the big thing is when you’re watching, you try not to do the ‘That-could-be-me’ thing. It will literally depress you instantly if that’s how you think.

“It’s certainly natural. It’s frustrating. You work so hard all year to play 16 regular season games and hopefully make your way into the playoffs and then when it gets taken away from you in the first game in the first quarter, it’s very disheartening and it’s difficult.

How did he keep from getting depressed?

“Time,” he said. “Time heals 99 percent of the wounds in this world. That’s all it is, time. There’s no magic formula. You can’t read a book and feel better. You just go through things, you know?”

Paul Kuharsky | email

ESPN Tennessee Titans reporter

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