After defensive lineman Malik Jackson’s first day as a Bronco he tweeted, “Wow first day of minicamp is over. I’ve never been this mentally and physically tired in my life.”
A day later, he feels better adjusted to the NFL level.
“I really didn’t know what to expect for the first few days out here,” Jackson said. “Yesterday hit me kind of hard, especially with the playbook and going out there trying to learn on the fly. Today kind of slowed down. I really got in the playbook last night and am just trying to go out there and have fun. I’m just happy to be here.”
While the NFL hours are demanding, Jackson said he is learning to embrace it as a fulltime job.
“Just waking up at 7 a.m. and leaving at 8 p.m. is kind of new to me,” he said. “I just have to learn to do it and learn to love it. This is what we do, so it’s what I’ll do.”
He said that while the workload is difficult, he knows that in order to succeed he needs to put in the hours on the practice field and in the classroom.
“You get out of it what you put in,” he said. “It’s up to you. Just work hard and go out there and have fun and just work.”
Even though he’s learning that the NFL is more demanding than college was, he knows that as he gets used to the NFL lifestyle it will get easier.
“College you go in there and the playbook is pretty easy and the coaches give you a little leeway,” he said. “Here they just through it at you and say, ‘Learn it.’ It is hard, but once you kind of get on a roll and start doing it, it gets easier.”
After an eye-opening experience on Day One of the rookie minicamp, Jackson had a better idea what to expect today and it showed on the field.
“You kind of get mentally fatigued because you haven’t seen that before and don’t know how to adapt to it,” he said. “Today was a better day for me as far as how the first practice went, and hopefully I can cap it off with a good practice in the walkthrough.”