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fordfixer
02-17-2011, 03:10 AM
Injuries test Sepulveda's patience, faith

http://www.timesonline.com/sports/steel ... 2bc8b.html (http://www.timesonline.com/sports/steelers/injuries-test-sepulveda-s-patience-faith/article_a50780f8-3a4f-11e0-a58d-00127992bc8b.html)

Mike Bires
BEAVER FALLS - Fate has dealt Daniel Sepulveda some tough times in recent years. And with the NFL's labor dispute getting uglier by the moment, more adversity could be on the way. But none of that has made the Steelers' twice injured punter a bitter man.
"God is good, isn't he?" Sepulveda said with a smile as he stood before a gathering of 3,000 or so students, faculty and staff at Geneva College.

Sepulveda came to Geneva as the guest speaker for the college's weekly chapel service at Metheny Field House. He does 20-to-30 of these speaking engagements each year. But his appearance at Geneva was his first since missing the Super Bowl for the second time in three years.
When the Steelers lost to the Green Bay Packers on Feb. 6, Sepulveda watched from sidelines in sweats. His season ended when he tore a ligament in his right non-kicking leg in a Dec. 5 win at Baltimore.
It's the same injury Sepulveda suffered two years ago in training camp that forced him to miss the entire season that ended with a win over the Arizona Cardinals in the Super Bowl.
Sepulveda fully expects to be ready to punt again in 2011. But as of right now, there's no telling when the 2011 season will begin or if they'll even be a 2011 season.
As NFL owners and players continue to squabble over a new labor agreement, there could be a lockout on March 4.
And, as of right now, Sepulveda doesn't have a contract. He's an unrestricted free agent and the Steelers don't figure to sign any of their potential free agents before the current collective bargaining agreement expires at midnight March 3.
"It's out of my control," Sepulveda said after his 20-minute chapel speech. "There are all kind of things I could worry about. But God has given me a peace about it. It might sound flippant. It might sound silly. But I'm really not worried about it.
"I'm trusting God and going forward. What the future looks like, I don't know. But I'm ready for whatever."
A fourth-round pick in the 2007 NFL Draft, Sepulveda is one of the league's best punters when healthy. That's why the Steelers paid him $1.101 million this past season.
Before his injury, Sepulveda was having an outstanding year. He ranked seventh in the league with a 45.5 yards per punt average.
If and when the NFL labor issue is solved, Sepulveda would prefer to be back with the Steelers.
"No question," he said. "I love the Steelers. I love playing for the Rooneys. I think we will still have a great team."
As far as his ongoing rehab, everything is going according to schedule.
In a few weeks, he may begin running. He's not sure if he'll be allowed to put during the organized team activity workouts in late May and June. But he figures to be ready by the time training camp begins.
Of course, that's if there's a training camp this summer.
"Everything depends on the (potential) lockout," he said. "My knee feels good. It's doing very well. But I have no idea what's going to happen. We'll have to wait and see."