Eight months after suffering a torn ACL, Ravens safety Terrence Brooks returned to action Saturday against the Redskins, a feeling that he described as "surreal."
"You’ve been out of the game so long that it’s kind of a surreal feeling,” Brooks told the Ravens Web site. “For the most part, it went well for me. It was pretty much just getting out there, seeing where my confidence level is at. And it was pretty good.”
“To tell you the truth, I was pretty calm, which was a little surprising,” Brooks added. “I thought I would be a little more nervous and things like that. But I guess for being out so long, I was just ready."
Brooks kept an impressive timetable in his rehab and took part in some OTA drills as early as this spring. He began camp on the physically-unable-to-perform list but then worked his way off the PUP list and onto the field.
Brooks, a third-round pick out of Florida State last year, played in 11 games last year and finished with 19 tackles. He also had his share of rookie mistakes. Most notably, playing against the Saints last year, Brooks patiently waited in the end zone for what appeared to be a sure interception ... until Marquis Colston stepped in front of him and grabbed the ball for a touchdown. Brooks' playing time was limited after that game, and he was lost for the season after being injured on the opening kickoff against Jacksonville on Dec. 14.
Now he's back and assumes a backup role behind Kendrick Lewis and Will Hill, but his presence becomes more important with Matt Elam lost for the season with a biceps injury.
Brooks played 35 snaps against the Redskins and finished with three tackles. He was also flagged for a roughing the passer penalty on a blitz.
"Terrence played well," coach John Harbaugh said. "He did a good job and came out of it OK. There’s going to be a little soreness anytime you’re coming off a knee like that, but he played fast, and he looked good out there.”
Brooks will likely get a longer look this week in Atlanta in the preseason finale. Harbaugh has already declared that starters won't play in the game, leaving Brooks, Anthony Levine, Brynden Trawick and Nick Perry as the safeties.