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Continued: Greg Childs hasn't given up hope of playing in the NFL someday

  • Article by: MARK CRAIG , Star Tribune
  • Last update: June 16, 2013 - 12:27 AM

Playing piano can wait

If he didn’t play football, Childs isn’t sure what he’d do. But that’s only because he can’t decide on just one thing.

“I like to work out, so I could be a fitness coach,” he says. “I like to play my piano for the church, so I could play the piano. I like to build things. When I was younger, I used to remodel houses, so I can put up shingles, do insulation, sheet rock, paint, make you a porch. I might even become a police officer.”

But that will have to wait. Today, Childs is up to 225 pounds and “lifting crazy weight, like lineman weight.” His single-leg press has gone from 45 pounds in December to 225. His double-leg press is over 500 pounds, up from 135 in December. He is running and cutting, although he still hasn’t been cleared to participate in team practices and probably won’t be for some time.

That hasn’t deterred Childs. He works out and rehabs at Winter Park about 5½ hours a day. While teammates, coaches and just about everyone else escaped the harsh winter at some point, Childs stayed. In fact, there were times when the only two people in the building were Childs and team assistant trainer Matt Duhamel.

“Greg could have just went off into never-never land and never been seen again,” Sugarman said. “It happens. But this guy is the complete opposite. He has said since Day 1, ‘Here’s the research, no one’s ever come back from it, but that doesn’t mean I can’t.’ He does everything we ask and exceeds it. How can you not root for the kid?”

Sugarman is careful not to discuss specific benchmarks for Childs or when he might be allowed to return to the practice field. The Vikings have prepared their roster as though Childs will never play another meaningful down, but General Manager Rick Spielman did make a point to tell Childs the night of his injury that the team will exercise patience with him.

“Just like all of our guys, we’re not going to put him on the field until he’s safe and able to protect himself and not be in harm’s way,” Sugarman said. “We don’t know when that’s going to be. But we do know that he’s met all the protocol benchmarks to date and is doing probably as well or better than we had expected to this point. We’ll just keep following the protocol and hope that he has a great result.”

Childs says he is confident that it will be better than great. A man of deep faith, he is expecting historically great because, as he says, he isn’t ready to be Wright’s ex-teammate anytime soon.

“One day, when this happens to other guys, they’ll have a guideline to go by,” Childs said. “They’ll be able to say, ‘OK, just because I tore both of mine, look at that guy Greg Childs. He worked his butt off and did what they said couldn’t be done.’ ”

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