By Larry Hawley
10:28 AM EDT, May 9, 2011
Indianapolis Colts linebacker Gary Brackett says he is anxious but trying to stay patient as the NFL Lockout drama continues. Up and down he goes. Side to side, vertically, whatever the situation might dictate. Aggressiveness is still important, but not as paramount as it would be if the hardwood below him was some form of green turf.
"It's great cardio, change of direction," said Gary Brackett of the basketball he played on Saturday at Hinkle Fieldhouse.
Not quite a recreational outing nor a workout, the Colts linebacker took the floor to help raise money for the American Cancer Society in the Brad and Tracy Stevens' Coaches Huddle basketball tournament.
The Butler coach along with a friend asked a willing Brackett to participate in the fundraiser, giving him a unique afternoon of physical activity.
"Anytime you can raise money for a good cause, I'm all for it," said Brackett-who right now is in the process of fighting for another cause.
Not necessarily him specifically, but rather the the NFL players hoping for a new labor agreement. The lack of resolution on that issue has forced an NFL lockout, which was overturned by one judge and then stayed by another court.
In the end it means the players remain unable to participate in individual and team activities at the Colts complex, and the recent events have only added to the anticipation of the locked out players.
"Guys are just anxious, we want to get back out there on the field and want to get back to practicing," said Brackett. "But you know, you just have to be patient." That's what we're telling the guys be patient."
Right now, that's all they can do until the Eight Circuit Court of Appeals votes to overturn the decision by Minnesota District Judge Susan Nelson to issue an injunction against the league which lifted the lockout.
It opened the doors to the Colts complex for players officially for about a day before the Eight Circuit Court issued the stay, which put the lockout back in.
"It was disappointing, you know, seeing the court case that you continue to win but yet there is still some resistance," said Brackett of the quick lift to the lockout. "Hopefully we can end up and wrap this thing up. Do what's right for both parties and go ahead and get this thing over with."
In the meantime, its every player for himself in a way. A number of players are working out together at various venues around Indianapolis, including Brackett at St. Vincent Sports Performance.
"I think guys are working out on their own. So as far as that, guys will be in shape, guys are doing what they normally do in the off season, which is staying in shape and working out, gaining that strength," said Brackett. "The only thing that we are lacking is team camaraderie. We're actually trying to get something together.
"We'll be ready by the time the season comes."
Until the courts work things out, that will happen outside of 56th street.
"Hopefully that stay can get uplifted and then guys can get back to work. Because we really want to go back to work, get the team together for our fans," said Brackett.