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Woodyard's World: Week 8

Posted Oct 25, 2013

Linebacker Wesley Woodyard blogs about the start of his NFL career under then-Broncos, now-Redskins Head Coach Mike Shanahan.

Editor's note: Linebacker Wesley Woodyard, who was voted as a team captain for the fifth-consecutive season this year, will contribute blog entries thoughout the 2013 season. See below for his latest entry about the start of his NFL career under then-Broncos, now-Redskins Head Coach Mike Shanahan.

I’m excited to get back out there with my teammates this week. I’ve been sitting on that sideline – I don’t know how many more games I could have coached over there. It was an exciting experience to get a chance to just sit down and help my teammates out, but I love playing football.

I’m excited to get back out there with my teammates and having that bond that we have as a defense, and as a whole team.

We’re playing the Redskins this week and as you probably know, their head coach is Mike Shanahan, who was here when I came into the league in 2008.

Although I didn’t get drafted, I got a phone call. On the other end was (Assistant Director of Pro Personnel Anthony) ‘Champ’ Kelly.

He was like, "Hey, you know, are you still looking to play football? Come on out here and play." And then he was like, "Hold on, wait, Coach Shanahan wants to talk to you." So I paused for a second and I really couldn’t believe it.

Then Coach Shanahan got on the phone and I was excited. He was like, "Yeah, Wes, we want to give you a shot to come out here and make this team. We think you have a really good shot to make the team."

So he called once – and about 10 minutes later, he called back again to make sure I was going to come out. I was like, "Yeah, I’m coming, I’ll be out there, I’ll be a Denver Bronco." So I flew out here the next day.

The thing I remember most about Shanahan is my first summer camp, I walked up to him and introduced myself. He looked back with a big smile on his face and said, "I know exactly who you are. We’re glad to have you here, just make sure you give us your best to make this team."

It was just a big deal for me, man. Seeing him – I had heard a lot about him, being a football fan – he’s a great coach and it was a lot for me, it was a big day for me.

So that’s the story of how I got my start in the league and with the Broncos.

I’m looking forward to getting back out there for our game this week, and then we’ve got the bye week coming up next.

I’m going to get away from football. I’m going to reset my mind. That’s the whole thing about the bye week. Nobody wants to act like, "Oh, you’ve gotta do football." No, you need to reset your mind and it’ll help you be refocused.