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McGowan itching to play again

Posted by Shalise Manza Young, Globe Staff  March 1, 2011 11:07 AM

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brandonmcgowan.jpgWith all of the labor uncertainty in the NFL right now, safety Brandon McGowan is in a difficult spot: he is set to become a free agent, and he missed all of last season due to torn pectoral suffered during a preseason game.

But the 27-year old says he's prepared for whatever happens, both with the CBA and for himself.

"It's fine; I've been through it before," he said of free agency. "I'm always prepared for anything."

In terms of his rehab, McGowan said he'd be ready to play football were training camp to start tomorrow, and that he's feeling good.

He did not know if there have been negotiations between his agent and the Pats to keep him in New England, but he would welcome a return.

"I love the team...you've got great coaching, and you've got great players," he said.

The NFL Players' Association has been telling its members for nearly two years that the lockout is coming and encouraging them to set aside money in the eventuality that there is a lockout that extends into the season.

McGowan, who will return to Chicago tonight and resume his training tomorrow (he works out with some of his former Bears teammates), began saving his money as soon as he started earning it in the NFL.

"Putting aside money is easy for me; it's something I've been doing since I came into the game," he said. "I've seen people with a lot of money drop and go broke, so my thing was to save as much as possible to take care of my family."

McGowan spent this morning at Monument High in South Boston as part of the NFL's Fuel Up to Play60 program, talking to students about the importance of good nutrition and getting enough exercise every day. He shared his own past, when he preferred McDonald's and Burger King to healthier fare, to now when he drinks wheatgrass and ginger as part of his health regimen.

He also had some fun playing a sudents vs. staff game in the gym - McGowan clearly wanted his team to win, but the students were declared the victors.

News, analysis and commentary from Boston.com's staff writers and contributors, including Zuri Berry and Erik Frenz.

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