Wes Welker isn’t worried about his long-term health after a rough and tumble career in the NFL. Or at the very least, he says he’s not worried.
Recently speaking with ESPN’s Mike Reiss, Welker said that he’s not sitting around waiting for his head to explode, this despite the six documented concussions he sustained in 12 prolific NFL seasons.
“I can’t sit here and worry about it; I don’t want to live my life that way,” Welker told ESPN during a promotional blitz with Massachusetts-based Leonard Hair Transplant Associates. “Is there a possibility [of long-term implications]? Maybe, I don’t know. We’ll have to see how everything kind of happens, I guess.
“I’m going to try to do everything I can to put myself in a position where I’m healthy and hopefully good. If I’m good, then great. At the same time, I’m not going to live my life worrying if my brain is going to explode at any second.”
Keep in mind that Welker’s six concussions were the ones that were actually documented by the media. Football players get their “bell rung” all the time and never do anything about it, let alone disclose it to the media so six could be just a ballpark figure. Also, that’s not even considering the fact that he had a stretch of three concussions in nine months.
Still, it’s hard to disparage Welker for taking a positive approach to his NFL career and the possible impacts of it. He played in the league for a long time and will go down as one of the more prolific slot receivers to play the game. In 175 total games played, Welker caught 903 passes for 9,924 yards and 50 touchdowns. He was a five-time Pro Bowl wideout and a two-time All-Pro.
Perhaps the only negative thing one could say about Welker’s career is that he never won a Super Bowl, this despite playing six years with Tom Brady, Bill Belichick and the Patriots and two seasons with Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos.
As far as he’s concerned, though, Welker doesn’t seem concerned about the way he played. In fact, he knows that he left it all on the table.
“I don’t know if I’d really change much — who I am or how I went about my business — because a lot of that aggressiveness and the reason [for success] was because of the way I played,” he said. “When I felt like I wasn’t playing that way, I wasn’t playing to my best ability.”
Hopefully, years of aggressive wideout play over the middle won’t come back to haunt Welker, but even if it does, he seems like the kind of guy who will take it in stride.
Welker was hired on as an offensive and special teams assistant coach by the Houston Texans in January of 2017.