It’s been 3 years since my favorite football player retired. Vince Wilfork. He was always a force to be reckoned with on and off the gridiron. Wilfork was a part of 2 Super Bowl wins with the Patriots before leaving New England in free agency for the Houston Texans in 2015, which I’m still heartbroken over. His retirement ceremony was one that left me teary-eyed and thankful as he signed a one day contract to go out as a Patriot. He was a player that always received high praise from head coach, Bill Belichick.
Wilfork had an impressive career, started nearly every game that he played in. In his career, the five-time Pro Bowler had 3 total interceptions. One of them going for 36 yards. He was, and still is, a beloved member of the Patriots – he presented the team with their sixth Lombardi trophy following Super Bowl LIII, yet another moment that left me teary-eyed and thankful. Wilfork was an incredible athlete and able to take on any challenge that Belichick handed his way. He thought very highly of himself, with good reason, listing a handful of positions that he thought he could play if Belichick ever needed him to. He could do the work of two linemen on the defense if he was asked to. Wilfork remained close with Robert Kraft, he went to Israel with Kraft in 2019, even aiding current and former players get baptized in the Jordan River.
After New England
When Wilfork left New England in 2015, I suffered my first heartbreak. Maybe I’m a tad dramatic, but I’m sure you all understand how I feel now that we’ve lost Tom Brady to the Buccaneers. I still have a hard time accepting that when I see 75 on the field for New England that it isn’t Wilfork. I did thrive getting quality content courtesy of HBO’s Hard Knocks. Honestly, I remember when the Patriots played the Texans that year my heart was in two. You want Wilfork to play well, but not too well.
We all watched a very large man create some iconic moments in New England Patriots history. Here are some of my favorite #Wilfork75 moments, from his time on the Texans and Patriots.
This is one play that I will never forget. I don’t think I will ever laugh that hard at a football game ever again—that play made for a great Black Friday shopping experience. He tossed a fully grown professional athlete like it was a sack of potatoes. I have a photo of the play signed and framed in my house, as every house should.
Lil Mayo Interview
This is one of the cutest interview series I’ve ever seen. I loved seeing the players interact with Chya, especially her Uncle Vince. If you didn’t smile watching this, I think your heart is made of coal.
Watch for yourself and smile, here.
Entrance to Hard Knocks
This is just hilarious. How can you not turn your frown upside down and expel a little chuckle or two watching this moment he had on the Texans?
Another signed photo I have is Wilfork intercepting Philip Rivers, there’s no limit on signed Wilfork memorabilia. Such a powerhouse and force you don’t want to miss with.
Laying out Donald Jones
His hits were as big as he is. If I were Donald Jones, I think I’d still be sore after that hit, even though it happened in 2012.
Bonus: Meeting him, of course!
My all-time favorite Wilfork moment has to be when I had the pleasure of meeting him and getting the Buttfumble photo signed.
-Jess Donahue (@jldx392)
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