Bledsoe Weighs in on the NFL Playoffs
There’s life after football. Former New England Patriot and Super Bowl champion Drew Bledsoe knows as much, and he joined the BFT on Friday to talk about what he’s been up to since he retired from the gridiron.
One passion Bledsoe has had throughout his whole life has been skiing. Starting at the age of two, Bledsoe admitted that he skied in secret throughout his entire NFL career during the offseason, always careful not to get hurt or let “the guys that were signing the checks” catch wind of his potentially dangerous hobby. When asked if he ever got into snowboarding, Bledsoe said the sport hadn’t been invented yet when he started hitting the slopes. His kids have showed an interest, though, and his deal with them was that they could snowboard only if they got jobs and saved up enough money to buy their own boards.
As the conversation progressed to football, Bledsoe was asked about the difference between the NFL’s regular season and postseason.
“When you get to the playoffs, all of the sudden everything is magnified,” he said. “The intensity level is so extreme, and every single play becomes so important.”
Many are talking of a potential AFC Championship matchup between the Denver Broncos and the New England Patriots, which would feature two Hall-of-Fame-caliber quarterbacks in Peyton Manning and Tom Brady, respectively. As to what set these two competitors above the rest of their peers, Bledsoe highlighted their preparation, their work ethic and their attention to detail.
Bledsoe knows all about the New England franchise, as the Patriots drafted him with the first overall pick in the 1993 NFL Draft. He knows Tom Brady quite well too, as they became teammates after the Patriots drafted Brady in the sixth round of the 2000 NFL Draft. When asked specifically about his former team and teammate-turned-successor, Bledsoe was quick to praise him and the team.
“Tom has been a part of a machine there in New England for a number of years,” said Bledsoe. “He’s obviously played [at] and extremely high level.”
With all the developments and reports about the effects of concussions and head injuries in former NFL players, Bledsoe was asked to give his take on the topic, especially because of his young sons who are looking to start playing the sport. Bledsoe affirmed that as a parent he is concerned and conscious of the risk of head injuries, but felt that one benefit current players and kids growing up now is the continuing dissemination of knowledge and the recognition that injuries to your brain need time to heal.
“[For] forever and ever, the ethos in football was that you had to be a tough guy,” said Bledsoe. “Everybody liked to talk and laugh [at] the stories about the guys that didn’t know where they were but still went back in the huddle, [but] all of the sudden those stories aren’t so funny anymore.”
Now retired from the NFL, Bledsoe devotes much of his time towards his vineyard and winery called Doubleback, located in Walla Walla, Washington. And even though he says he’s enjoying life after football, Bledsoe knows nothing will quite live up to tossing the pigskin on Sundays.
“Unless I land on the moon someday, playing NFL quarterback is the coolest thing I’ll ever do.”
To listen to the complete interview with Drew Bledsoe click on the link below.