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tk13
12-29-2005, 01:39 AM
http://www.kansascity.com/mld/kansascity/sports/13504341.htm

Roaf hints he’ll return to Chiefs in 2006
Right guard Shields won’t say if the end is near for his NFL career

By ELIZABETH MERRILL
The Kansas City Star

It’s an eight-hour jaunt from Willie Roaf’s house in Arkansas to Arrowhead Stadium, and his mom won’t be making it Sunday. The drive is too long. Her son is too preoccupied.

“If I thought it was his last game ever, I probably would,” Andree Layton Roaf said Wednesday. “I don’t think it is, OK?”

These are uncertain times in Kansas City, with the Dick Vermeil decision looming and two massive linemen aching as the season draws to an end. Roaf and right guard Will Shields, who have 22 Pro Bowls between them, have hinted about retirement all season.

Roaf changed direction Wednesday, casually dropping in a teleconference that there is a “good chance” he’ll be back in 2006. He missed six games because of a hamstring injury, and in the middle of rehab, Roaf openly contemplated the end. What happened upon his return in November obviously changed his mind.

He was dominant at left tackle, and helped the Chiefs reclaim their spot amongst the top offenses in the NFL.

“I just don’t think he’s finished with it,” Roaf’s mom said. “I don’t think he has accomplished what he wanted to accomplish for the team, and he knows that they need him. If he’s healthy, he’s such an important building block for the team. I think he knows that.”

Shields may be a different story. He’s battling arthritis in his knee and back. He slipped out of the locker room Wednesday saying he’s not thinking about Sunday possibly being his last game and that he’ll worry about his decision after the season.

Like he has on numerous occasions this season, he dodged the “How are you feeling?” question.

“I’m alive,” Shields said as he peeled the tape off his feet. “That’s a good thing.”

Though the end seems inevitable for Shields, it’s also rather unfathomable. Tackle Kevin Sampson was 12 when Shields made his first start in Kansas City in September 1993. Shields has started 206 straight games and has blasted holes for Marcus Allen, Priest Holmes and Larry Johnson.

“Will is so hard to read as a person,” said linemate Brian Waters. “Will is a guy that one day he comes in and he is as chipper as they all come and one day he may not say a word the whole day.

“The difference with him is Will is a guy, who in this city, has played as high as there can ever be. Eleven straight Pro Bowls, 206 straight starts. … In a city that you played your whole career, you don’t ever want to go and have your worst year in your last year.”

Roaf’s mom, a former member of the Arkansas Supreme Court, said one of Willie’s regrets was that he couldn’t spend his entire career in Kansas City. He was a first-round pick for New Orleans in the 1993 draft, and his family watched him play with a torn knee ligament, arthritis and gout.
When Roaf’s hamstring popped, they worried that the Chiefs might rush him back. He had time to heal, and, at 35, is still one of the best left tackles in the NFL, Vermeil said.

“If I’m managed right,” Roaf said, “I can play another year or two. But I will take it one year at a time.”

With Will and Willie, the Chiefs led the NFL in offense in 2004, set a franchise record for points in 2003, and rank second in the league in total offense this season. Their teammates know it can’t last. They’ve seen Roaf limp around the locker room. They’ve heard whispers that Shields is hurting.

“One thing about Willie is you can always tell when he’s not feeling good and when he is,” Waters said. “The last two or three weeks, he’s been feeling good. … The way he’s felt and practiced, and how jovial he’s been around the locker room, that alone gives me a good feeling that he’s not a guy that’s looking, you know, looking at the light and saying, ‘I’m one step out of here.’

“He doesn’t sound like it. It doesn’t feel like he’s a guy who’s ready to walk away from the game.”

greg63
12-29-2005, 01:43 AM
Great news for the Chiefs!

nascher
12-29-2005, 02:42 AM
he said before this season he will play 2 more !

DaWolf
12-29-2005, 03:26 AM
“If I’m managed right,” Roaf said, “I can play another year or two. But I will take it one year at a time.”


Translation: let's wait and see who the next coach is before I do anything...

SCTrojan
12-29-2005, 06:48 AM
I think the most telling item in the article is the quote from Roaf's mom. I suppose she would be here if she thought it was his last game.

I still think whether Vermeil is here will affect his decision.

stevieray
12-29-2005, 06:51 AM
Another groundbreaking article by Merrill.

MOhillbilly
12-29-2005, 06:51 AM
WOW. you gotta be hardcore to play w/ gout.

ptlyon
12-29-2005, 08:17 AM
Translation: let's wait and see who the next coach is before I do anything...

More of a translation, "Keep me out of 2 a days and I'll be back".

Cochise
12-29-2005, 08:19 AM
WOW. you gotta be hardcore to play w/ gout.

From what they said last year they can give you medication now and it goes away in a couple days, but he has continually had trouble with it.

Chiefnj
12-29-2005, 08:31 AM
Roaf is a tough situation for a new coach to deal with. On one hand you know he is a great older player who needs special treatment; limited contact and limited practices. On the other hand, a new coach wants to establish that he is the boss and you don't want to set up special rules for players.

trndobrd
12-29-2005, 09:03 AM
Roaf is a tough situation for a new coach to deal with. On one hand you know he is a great older player who needs special treatment; limited contact and limited practices. On the other hand, a new coach wants to establish that he is the boss and you don't want to set up special rules for players.


Seems simple to me. He is arguably the best player ever at LT and has more pro-bowls than I have fingers. It's not like he is a rookie wide receiver who is just lazy and doesn't want to work. Nor is he a Prima Dona type who will be smoking cigars in the hot-tub of his private locker room while the rest of the guys are killing themselves during 2-a-days.

Will Shields is gone. Can't beat the arthritis.

RedNFeisty
12-29-2005, 09:09 AM
Seems simple to me. He is arguably the best player ever at LT and has more pro-bowls than I have fingers. It's not like he is a rookie wide receiver who is just lazy and doesn't want to work. Nor is he a Prima Dona type who will be smoking cigars in the hot-tub of his private locker room while the rest of the guys are killing themselves during 2-a-days.

Will Shields is gone. Can't beat the arthritis.

Agreed, Roaf has earned his way and should have special treatment if you ask me. This team is not ready to give up Roaf and would not survive if they did let him retire.

Chiefnj
12-29-2005, 09:12 AM
Seems simple to me. He is arguably the best player ever at LT and has more pro-bowls than I have fingers. It's not like he is a rookie wide receiver who is just lazy and doesn't want to work. Nor is he a Prima Dona type who will be smoking cigars in the hot-tub of his private locker room while the rest of the guys are killing themselves during 2-a-days.

Will Shields is gone. Can't beat the arthritis.

You are correct, it would appear to the casual fan that Roaf has certainly earned special treatment. That doesn't change the fact that it can create problems when dealing with other athletes with huge egos who may want special treatment as well. It's easier for a coach to have one set of rules for all.

MOhillbilly
12-29-2005, 09:22 AM
From what they said last year they can give you medication now and it goes away in a couple days, but he has continually had trouble with it.


i had it about 4-5 years ago and it hobbles your ass.

ptlyon
12-29-2005, 09:23 AM
From what they said last year they can give you medication now and it goes away in a couple days, but he has continually had trouble with it.

This is true - I am on 300mg of Allyopurnol a day. I have a friend that is 500 a day.

ptlyon
12-29-2005, 09:24 AM
i had it about 4-5 years ago and it hobbles your ass.

it does suck - if you've never had it you wouldn't understand how excrucinating it is.

MOhillbilly
12-29-2005, 09:30 AM
it does suck - if you've never had it you wouldn't understand how excrucinating it is.


like i was saying it shows how hardcore Roaf really is and one might read into to that more than anything else in the article about roaf coming back next year.

milkman
12-29-2005, 09:49 AM
You are correct, it would appear to the casual fan that Roaf has certainly earned special treatment. That doesn't change the fact that it can create problems when dealing with other athletes with huge egos who may want special treatment as well. It's easier for a coach to have one set of rules for all.

It's not special treatment because of who he is.

It's special treatment because of age, and the wear and tear on the body.

I think even those other athletes with huge egos understand that.

Kerberos
12-29-2005, 09:54 AM
This is true - I am on 300mg of Allyopurnol a day. I have a friend that is 500 a day.


I had problems with Gout and I had to take 100mg of Indicin (spelling?) just to get the swelling down. Even on Allyopurnol I would get huge flairups.

I don't struggle with DaGout anymore as I have given up drinking. I don't regret a day of it either.

#1 I have more money in my pocket on a consistant basis.

#2 I don't have flairups that are so bad I cannot walk and have to be carried into the drs. office.

#3 I would rather my son (20 months old) NOT grow up around a dad that is a heavy drinker and not have alcohol in the house like I did.

If anyone out there has ever had da gout you can see why playing with it would be a tremendous feat for anyone. No pun intended.

:D


.

Rain Man
12-29-2005, 10:02 AM
It's not special treatment because of who he is.

It's special treatment because of age, and the wear and tear on the body.

I think even those other athletes with huge egos understand that.


Here's a good potential rule: anyone with ten or more Pro Bowls gets special treatment.