Colby Brown has had plenty of practice time and a couple of game situations to test his surgically repaired left knee.
And, if you look at last weekend’s game against Clayton Valley Charter, his recovery is almost complete.
In an otherwise dismal offensive performance by the Senators last week in a 55-7 loss to Clayton Valley Charter, Brown rushed for 67 yards, including an 18-yard scoring run, and caught two passes for 21 yards. He didn’t look like a guy who missed a year of football with an injury.
“Running the ball and pass receiving he was a big bright spot,” coach Blair Roman said. “I remember I had a lot of angst at camp waiting to see how the knee was going to hold up. He looked good out there.
“He’s got some things to work on, and he know what they are.”
Brown, as per his custom, thought he did “OK”.
“The knee feels great,” Brown said Wednesday morning as the Senators prepared for their game Friday at home against McQueen. “It’s not quite 100 percent, but it’s getting there. I was more nervous than afraid (at camp and first scrimmage). I wasn’t scared of it, just butterflies. I just need to keep getting reps.
“There are areas I need to improve in. I need to work on my blocking. I didn’t think it was very good against Clayton Valley. I could have run some better pass routes, too. I want to be well rounded; good at everything. I don’t want to be good at just one thing.”
Maybe Brown is being to hard on himself or maybe he’s right on the money. Nobody is ever perfect, and Brown, like any other athlete, wants to have success each time he steps on the field.
“Colby is all about success,” Roman said. “He really cares about the success of the team. He takes it personally. He wants to do things right, and he puts out the effort until he does get it right.”
Brown’s unselfishness is why he accepted a new role in the Carson offense. Brown gained more than 750 yards his sophomore season, including a 202-yard, three-touchdown effort at North Valleys in what was considered his coming out party, and certainly he was a proven commodity coming into the season.
As a tailback/fullback, he was more of a North-South runner who didn’t catch the ball often.
He is now playing “F” back, a spot Dylan Sawyers made famous. It requires reading the defense on the move and moving laterally (East-West) at the snap. It was a move made to take advantage of his athleticism, quickness and ability to catch the ball. It was also a way to get another athlete on the field.
“Elijah (Fajayan) really came on at fullback after Seamus (Burns) got hurt,” Roman said. “It gave us more flexibility to play Colby at the F. He may get to play both positions. I think he’s getting more confidence.”
Fajayan carried five times for 22 yards and caught two passes for 11 yards.
Brown is getting used to the new spot, though truth be told, he feels more comfortable at fullback because he likes running downhill. He works at both spots in practice.
“The position switch is up to the coach,” Brown said. “I’ll play wherever they need me. Elijah is very smart. He’s picked up things quickly. I’ve helped him out a little bit.
“Playing A back you hit the hole and go. I like it (F). Catching the ball adds another dimension. It’s something I’ve worked hard at.”