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Dion Jordan: I 'can't waste' chance if reinstated by NFL

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Suspended Dolphins pass rusher Dion Jordan believes his football career is far from over.

The No. 3 overall pick in the 2013 draft, Jordan plans to apply for NFL reinstatement on Wednesday after a failed drug test in December 2014 triggered an indefinite ban.

"I'm not about to waste it. I can't waste it. And I (expletive) love doing it," Jordan told Tom Pelissero of USA TODAY Sports. "Who doesn't love running out in front of 30,000-plus fans and you get that rush? But it's also things that you can get that rush from that can be very satisfying and can carry you on to a successful life after football.

"I just turned 26 years old, so life starts to hit you in the face. Who are you outside of those shoulder pads and helmet?" Jordan asked. "And it's weird, but I feel like it's a blessing for me at this point in time to think about it, instead of waiting 'til they really tell me I can't play football no more."

Agent Doug Hendrickson says Jordan hasn't missed or failed a drug test since his ban began in April 2015. Hendrickson believes his client will be reinstated, based largely on how Jordan has grown during his suspension.

For the past two months, the former Oregon star has worked closely with San Francisco-based trainer Tareq Azim, whose holistic program strives to "maximizing humanity" in his clients, a group that includes Marshawn Lynch, a gaggle of MMA fighters, pro cyclist Andrew Talansky and San Francisco 49ers CEO Jed York.

Per Pelissero, Azim "confronts his 'teammates' with the inevitability of death, what they need to be content when it arrives and the way their fears are preventing them from reaching their ideals." In Jordan's case, according to Azim, this led to "seeking acceptance through a channel that really had no value."

Jordan claims he "never, ever" struggled with drugs before turning pro, but that changed after his rookie year in 2013, an underwhelming campaign weighted down by pre-draft shoulder surgery.

Healthy again, Jordan has shed 12 to 13 pounds of fat and trimmed down to 270 pounds under Azim's watch, leaving Hendrickson to say: "To me, he should be a blueprint for the NFL system of guys being out for a year in terms of what he's been doing and how he's come on of late."

Dolphins executive Mike Tannenbaum said earlier this month that "once (Jordan is) reinstated, he will be a member of the team and we'll go from there."

If allowed back, Jordan will encounter a Dolphins coaching staff that wasn't around when Miami traded up to grab the pass rusher in 2013. The new regime must decide what to do about Jordan's nearly $1.7 million roster bonus, which comes due on the fifth day of training camp.

He stands out as a massive draft bust, but Jordan is still young enough to pick up the pieces if the NFL -- and the Dolphins -- give him a chance.

"I just want to play football. Because I got myself in trouble, I really ain't got the say-so in a lot of things," Jordan said. "But I do have the say-so in how I approach every day, how I approach my workout, how I deal with people, outside when I walk the streets, and how I wake up every morning as far as getting done what I need to do to get back on the football field."

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