When Day Three of the NFL Draft began, TCU offensive lineman Marcus Cannon was getting ready to begin chemotherapy for non-Hodgkins lymphoma. He was diagnosed with the disease after it was discovered at the NFL Scouting Combine, which was a blessing and a curse for Cannon. Cannon went from being considered a late-first/early-second-round pick to being diagnosed with cancer. However, he was lucky that it was discovered early at the Combine before it got worse. Despite starting chemotherapy and not knowing what his future held, the New England Patriots selected him 138th overall.
This week marks a milestone for Cannon, as he will finish up his chemotherapy this week and continue (that’s right, continue, not start) his offseason training, the Fort-Worth Star-Telegram reports.
“Cannon’s chemo treatments will be finished this week; his smile is back; he is working out and hopes to be at the New England Patriots’ training camp for the first day of practice in August, assuming the NFL lockout ends,” Charean Williams writes.
While Cannon hopes to be at training camp, whether he is able to play or will spend the season on injured reserve remains is unknown. What is remarkable though, and something that surely gives Cannon hope that he will indeed play football this year, is his response to the chemo. As Charean Williams points out, his response and recovery is truly remarkable.
Cannon has had nausea only once. The day after his first treatment, he didn’t feel well and cut short his fishing trip with Jones. He hasn’t lost his hair, and he has maintained his weight despite losing his appetite. (He said he dropped to 338 after his first chemo treatment before figuring out he had to eat despite not being hungry. He now weighs 348.)
Cannon lifts three days a week at a local gym and runs at TCU with former teammates. He regularly tests his strength by benching 315 pounds.
“If I can do it eight or nine times, I’m good,” Cannon said.
The same day he had his third chemo treatment, Cannon swam and played basketball. He said he couldn’t be better.
“All I can do is keep doing what I’m doing,” Cannon said. “That’s to keep praying and accept my healing.”
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