Wearing a large cast and leaning on crutches, Gross visited his teammates at Bank of America Stadium on Monday for the first time since suffering the gruesome, season-ending injury during a Nov. 15 game against the Atlanta Falcons.
"For next season, I have no concerns at all," said Gross, who made his first Pro Bowl last season.
"Everyone hears it pop and everyone panics, so I was like, 'Don't panic,'" Gross said. "Then I rolled out, and from below my calf down was pointing out to the right. I mean, I'm not a doctor, but I figured it wasn't good."
Panthers coach John Fox said after the game that Gross fractured his ankle, but the lineman said he broke both major bones in his lower leg. He had rods, plates and screws inserted during surgery immediately after the game.
Gross spent two nights in the hospital, then was in considerable discomfort until last weekend. He'll be on crutches for six more weeks, and the healing process will take about three months.
"It was like the perfect break," Gross said. "Nothing down in my ankle, no fractures, no ligament or cartilage damage. Once it heals up, they say it'll be stronger than before, because I'll have titanium down in there."
"Friday morning, I got a call from him early," Delhomme said of Gross. "I think he said it best, 'If you guys had won by 30, I would have felt so much better.' It's crushing because you feel like you let guys down. If you care about it, I think that's how you feel."
Gross, who plans on being around the team as much as he can, said he still hasn't seen a replay of the injury.
"I heard it looked nasty," Gross said. "They said I didn't scream too bad, so I improved my street cred a little."
Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press