Derek Wolfe on Thursday Night Games: ‘it takes years off your life’

You can add Denver Broncos defensive lineman Derek Wolfe to the list of NFL players who aren’t fond of playing games on Thursday nights. The fifth year player joined The Jim Rome Show on Friday and shared his thoughts on playing games on only four days rest.

“I’d rather do away with it, because as a defensive lineman, you play 67 snaps on Sunday and for you to come right back again on Thursday and do the same thing, it’s not good for you, and it takes years off your life really,” Wolfe said. “We’re out there getting hit in the head and banging around, but hey if that’s what they want us to do, that’s what we get paid, we get paid to do what we’re told, so we really don’t have a say in it.”

The 26-year-old says the older he’s gotten, the more aware he’s gotten of the dangers of football on his body and mind. He said he knows his shelf life isn’t long, so he does his best to be smart about it.

“As a kid, when I was 7-years-old and I signed up for starting to play football, I wasn’t thinking oh, I’m probably not going to live as long as most people,” Wolfe said. “But once you get to the NFL and start developing yourself into a man and you start trying to build a family and stuff, people are worried about you. My fiancé worries about every time I come home from a game, I can hardly walk, and that worries her. Then she sees me again on Sunday, and I’m ready to go. But I told her hey look, we can only do this for a short time, our careers aren’t as long as most people’s. So it’s not like we are doing this till we’re 40, 45 years old. I mean, some people are playing till they’re 40, but as a defensive lineman, you’re not playing till you’re 40 years old.”

The Super Bowl 50 champion said his life isn’t easy on his fiancé, either, but says she buys in and is a big reason for his success.

“It’s tough for her, she has a hard time dealing with it. But she does her best to make sure I’m ready to go on Sunday,” Wolfe said. “She knows I’m not going to stop, so she does everything she possibly can to make sure I’m healthy and ready to go. Just making sure I got Epson salt baths ready every night, making sure that I got the right kind of food going into my body. She cooks every single meal I eat, stuff like that. She makes sure I’m ready to go and that I’m as healthy as I possibly can be.”

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