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Dante Fowler feels good in return to practice

Dante Fowler, the Jacksonville Jaguars first round draft pick, speaks during an NFL football press conference at EverBank Field in Jacksonville, Fla., Saturday May 2, 2015. (Fran Ruchalski/The Florida Times-Union via AP)


Jaguars defensive end Dante Fowler had a long wait before he got to take part in his second NFL practice.

His first time on the field as a professional ended with a torn ACL in Jacksonville’s first practice of rookie minicamp last year and Fowler missed the entire 2015 season as a result. Fowler was back at practice on Monday for the first day of OTAs, an event that had him feeling antsy enough on Sunday night that it was difficult to get to sleep.

Fowler got his rest, though, and said after Monday’s practice that everything went well physically.

“I can turn it loose,” Fowler said, via the team’s website. “I felt pretty good, especially bending the corner and turning my torque and things like that. That was my biggest concern. That’s what I wanted to see, and I felt pretty good. ... I’m just now soaking it all in like, ‘Man, I made it through a practice. I felt good. This didn’t hurt. That didn’t hurt.’”

Fowler knows the Jaguars need someone to provide a boost to their pass rush and said “that’s what I’m going to do” when discussing his plans for the coming season. If Fowler can pull that off, Jacksonville should be better on defense even if this year’s rookies have fallen victim to the same bad injury luck he experienced in 2015.