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Pouha says he's healed, ready to play vs. 'Boys

New York Jets defensive tackle Sione Pouha celebrates

New York Jets defensive tackle Sione Pouha celebrates after the Jets' 28-21 win over the New England Patriots in an NFL divisional playoff football game in Foxborough, Mass. (Jan. 16, 2011) Photo Credit: AP

Sione Pouha was almost ready to bust out a few moves, proving that his left knee has healed up perfectly fine and he's on track to play in the Jets' Sept. 11 season opener against the Cowboys.

"I'll go out and do a karate chop right now if you want," the defensive tackle said today at Jets kickoff luncheon at Ciprani Wall Street, which helps benefit Alliance for Lupus Research (ALR) and the New York Jets Foundation. "I'll do a 360 and do some martial arts if you want me to. I'm ready to roll."

Pouha has been nursing a knee injury suffered in the preseason opener versus the Texans, causing him to miss the Jets' last two preseason contests. He said it happened when he was reversing field chasing down the play during a bootleg, getting caught up in some traffic.

But Pouha said the swelling has gone down, and he practiced on Tuesday. He's not going to play in tomorrow's preseason finale against the Eagles at MetLife Stadium, sitting out with the rest of the starters. He's already looking forward to being on the field for the Jets' matchup with the Cowboys in 11 days.

"As of right now, everything is ready to roll," he said. "Just like the lockout, that's history and I'm ready to move forward."

Since he's been sidelined the last two games -- he did say he practiced last week leading up to the Giants game as if he were playing, but ultimately the team played it smart -- it's given understudy's Kenrick Ellis and Martin Tevaseu more quality action.

"I think it's beneficial for anybody in that situation for people to step up," Pouha said. "Obviously, when I was a young cat, I had to do the same thing for Dewayne Robertson, and I found myself in a similar situation when Jenks [Kris Jenkins] kind of went out. When you have those extra reps, any time you can get reps on the field, especially live ones, it's definitely beneficial."

That, though, doesn't mean it's been easy for the defensive captain to sit out.

"As a football player, you always want to be out there battling with your fellas," Pouha said, "but at the same time understand the situation. You've got to take care of yourself. But at the same time, you try to help where you can. And for me, that was being an extra eye, an extra voice, an extra ear in terms trying to help the other defensive players or wherever I can help out to make an assessment of the game."

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