Wes Welker stands just 5’9″ and weighs 185 pounds. He’s one of the NFL’s smaller guys, yet he takes some of the biggest hits around.
Now 32-years-old, Welker doesn’t bounce back like he did when he was 26-years-old and racking up nearly 1,200 receiving yards and eight touchdowns. He knows he has to pay more attention to his body to keep performing well.
“I think the main thing is body work and rest,” Welker said. “Stretching and eating right. Obviously, the weight room, doing the right things there; warming up.”
It seems to be working. Welker’s stats haven’t dropped off. During his last two seasons in New England, he had 1,559 receiving yards and nine touchdowns, and 1,354 receiving yards and six touchdowns, respectively.
He’s only played in one game for Denver, but he’s already on pace for over 1,000 yards this season.
“It seems like every year, you add something to try and get better at, or that works for you or whatever,” Welker said of his routine. “It just becomes more and more time consuming and you don’t find yourself going out to dinner quite as much or anything else, but that’s OK, because you’re doing what you love.”
Welker has played in no less than 14 games in his eight full years in the NFL. He’s the John Stockton of his day/sport. In his 19-year career, former Utah Jazz point guard and Hall of Famer, Stockton, only had two seasons where he played less than 82 regular season games. Like Welker, Stockton was undersized in the grand scheme of his sport at 6’1,” 175 pounds. Oh, and he set some of the toughest picks in the NBA. We all know Welker runs some of the best routes in the NFL and he’s one of the most difficult guys to stop.
It goes to show the importance of taking care of yourself, not just during the season, but 365 days a year. It breeds longevity and consistency. This holds even more true for the “little” guys, whether they wear short shorts or long pants.