London Fletcher: The Relentless Price One of the NFL’s Greatest Warriors Pays
WASHINGTON (CBSDC) – London Fletcher, a man you hear a ton about on the field and not much else off it, opened up about all aspects of his life to Tim Layden of Sports Illustrated, giving Redskins fans a new perspective on the makeup of a man who’s played 240 consecutive games at inside linebacker.
At 38, Fletcher is preparing for his 16th and final NFL season in 2013, and if you understood what this guy puts himself through to preserve his body for the grind of the NFL, you’d understand why he spent so much time mulling over his return this season, before ultimately getting cut open twice just to do so.
You may have already heard about the frequent dry needle injections, daily chiropractor visits and hot and cold baths, all of which help Fletcher stave off the inevitability of injury that typically comes with life in the NFL, but you probably haven’t heard it quite like this.
Layden told 106.7 The Fan’s Holden and Danny Thursday, Fletch “probably spends as much time staying healthy as he does playing football.”
“On game days, he’ll do seven baths,” Layden said. “He gets into hot water, then he does cold water, then hot water, then cold water, then hot water then he goes out and plays an NFL game.”
“You’ve seen that at training camp,” he said. “it doesn’t look like anything, but then you think about it, when these guys finish their hot weather practice, they get right into basically a tub of ice water up to their neck.”
Along with the daily hot and cold baths and pricking his skin with “like 60” needles, Fletcher undergoes a burgeoning type of chiropractic therapy referred to as active release technology, during which you basically just “lie on a table and you get your entire body rubbed into submission.”
Apparently Fletcher sustained some nerve and tissue damage last season which affected his central nervous system, leaving him unbalanced, as he told Layden.
HIS CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM.
“That’s what these guys deal with,” Layden said.
It was riveting.
In the clip below, you can hear the fascinating account about London, who let Layden into his home to really capture the life behind the machine who hasn’t missed a game in his career. Also included is a bit about his wife, who shies away from the spotlight so as to avoid infusing herself into being “part of the legend.”