Rookie diary: James Casey

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EDITOR'S NOTE:

Tight end James Casey drafted in the fifth round (152nd overall) this April, is a former minor league baseball player who joined the Texans as a 24-year-old rookie from Rice. He has been chronicling his rookie season with weekly diary entries for HoustonTexans.com.*

I'm really feeling for O.D. this week. It's very unfortunate that he had to go down. You never want to see anybody get hurt, especially a guy like O.D. that you're around all the time. He's a great guy and a great player, and I really feel for him.

It's going to take a lot of work from us other tight ends to try to replace what he was doing out there, because he was playing really well. But knowing O.D., he's going to work as hard as he can and get back in rehab and he'll be back better than ever, I'm sure.

I had a knee injury myself, which was kind of bad timing. It was nothing compared to the severity of O.D.'s, but I had to have surgery on Monday to get it fixed. I got scoped and was able to walk fine the day after the surgery. I should be back really soon and hopefully just miss this one game.

This is actually my fourth knee scope, so I'm very familiar with the injury. I had two in high school on the same right knee. I had one in college, and I hurt it on the sixth game of my freshman year there, played the rest of the season with it, then had a scope at the end of the year.

The worst thing for an athlete is to be injured and to not be able to go out there and practice and feel like they're contributing, so that's kind of what I'm going through right now. I feel bad because all the other guys are out there practicing hard and sweating out on the field and I'm just rehabbing.

I get to the stadium around 6:30 a.m., start rehabbing right away and pretty much rehab all day. I'm still staying on top of everything, going to the meetings and watching film as much as I can. Since I can't go out there and help on the field right now, I'm trying to do my part to get back.

My knee was really bothering me, so hopefully with all this rehabbing I'm doing and getting that surgery, I can come back and be a lot better than what I was before. Hopefully, my mobility will be a lot better and I'll be able to contribute and perform better than when I was wearing that big knee brace for a couple of games.

{QUOTE}I don't know if I'll be able to travel this week, but if I can, I'll do whatever I can to help this team out, whether it's cheerleading or handing out water, whatever. Our bye week is coming up, so I think it's a blessing in disguise that I had this surgery now. I'm a big believer that things happen for a reason. I'll just try to keep everything positive and keep working hard.

I got a lot of plays at Buffalo because of O.D.'s injury and was fortunate enough to make two catches in the game. It was a first time a caught a pass in the NFL, so that meant a lot. Even though I wasn't able to do much with them and probably didn't look very athletic out there with my knee and everything, it's still two catches in the NFL. I enjoyed every minute of it. For it to happen in a win on the road in a big game, that was an amazing experience.

I'm looking forward to watching Joel and Anthony play on Sunday. From being around them all the time, I know how hard they work and I know they're going to give it everything they've got.

Everybody on the team knows how underrated Joel is, because everybody sees him practice every day and in the games. I've been talking to Anthony this week and I know he's really excited about getting the opportunity to play, too. I wish I could be out there with them, but I know they're going to do a great job.

Thanks to everybody for all the support and the well-wishes about my knee. I've had a lot of people e-mailing me and contacting me wishing me a speedy recovery, and that really means a lot. I appreciate that. I'll be back in no time, and hopefully better than ever. I'm really excited about getting back on the field and finishing the season out strong and hopefully really helping the team out down the road.

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