“I’m excited I’m back and I’m excited to just be out there with the guys,” said Hartline, who has never missed this much time due to injury going back to college or high school. “It’s easy to talk but it’s kind of hard to really lead until you’re out there with him. So hopefully now I can step more into a leadership role. … I had too many (target dates) and that was apparent, too. I got to the point where I felt bad telling coach, ‘I’m targeting this, and I’m targeting this,’ and then I wasn’t ready. It’s been tough but this last target date I did a pretty good job.”
Philbin was glad to see Hartline back out on the field because all he had to evaluate beforehand was film of last season as the speedster also couldn’t practice during OTAs and minicamp. He did like how Hartline ran around on the field today.
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“We want to get him as familiar as we can with our concepts pass game wise, which he’s obviously a little bit behind from a rep standpoint,” Philbin said. “I don’t think the learning part will be an issue but I think from a rep standpoint he’s going to obviously need to catch up a little bit.”