When you look at facing retirement in your mid-30s, and all of a sudden the outlet for that passion and work ethic goes away, you can't just sit back in a rocking chair and be retired at 35. I'm not a good enough golfer to play golf every day.
The game against the Vikings back in my second year stands out. It was kind of a turnaround for us. It allowed us to make a run at the playoffs for the first time in quite a while. The memories are so many it's hard to pin one down.
I feel so fortunate, so honored, to have played this game that I love for so long, with so many great players, and in front of so many wonderful fans. I fulfilled a childhood dream the first time I stepped on an NFL field, and the league did not let me down one time.
You want hot days to get your fruit ripe but then you want it to cool off nicely at night so that the grapes stay on the vine longer and develop complexity.
That's the only reason I'm here. I don't need to play the game for any other reason than to win a championship.
I kind of picked up the game at an early age. The way that other kids would learn what a fork or a spoon is.
Our very long-term prospective hinges on making the best possible wine we can.
The amount of work and the amount of both physical and emotional investment it takes to get to the top.
The positives of retiring outweighed the positives of returning and my desire to still play.
I retire with a smile on my face, in good health, and ready to spend autumns at my kids' games instead of my own. I'm excited to start the next chapter of my life.
You know, it's a different deal - throwing a football as opposed to throwing a baseball.
It's a really interesting and diverse business. You're a farmer first, then a winemaker, then you're onto marketing and distribution. So it's multi-faceted and really engaging. I've learned more in the last couple years than in the ten prior to that, so it's been pretty interesting.
Playing in New England and the Boston area, the fans are so passionate about their sports if you don't play well, they'll let you know so I know it's not something that they take lightly.
We started seven years ago and finally released our first vintage in March. It's an '07 vintage from Walla Walla, which is my old hometown. It also happens to be a world-class wine region that's just exploding on the scene right now.
Fairly early in my career, I had a passion for wine just as a consumer, and I started to learn about the whole process, starting with a piece of raw ground, and ending up with a work of art in a bottle.
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