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Cameron Wake: A Walking Life Lesson

Travis Wingfield

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I know, you don’t come to this space to heed lessons about how to live your life. This is a football blog with a focus on the Miami Dolphins.

Today, following the team’s presumed final OTA practice (provided tomorrow’s is canceled) Cam Wake spoke to the media for 14 minutes. It started as a normal, late-spring football press conference would.

“How are you feeling?”

“What are your thoughts about new teammate Robert Quinn?”

The garments of the future Ring of Honor pass-rusher stoked a question that led the beat writers down a rabbit hole.

Biceps carved from marble protruding from the sleeves of a t-shirt with one simple message across the chest, Wake fielded questions about his regiment.

Sacrifice.

One word to define the illustrious, inconceivable career of the second-most productive sack artist in team history.

Asked about his shirt, Wake began a sermon-like TED TALK about life as a professional athlete.

“People ask me all the time, [like] what is a cheat meal or a cheat day like for you. I tell them there is no cheat, this is my lifestyle. Every sacrifice has a reward. Whatever the pull is for you, whether it’s the beach, partying, girls, fishing, golf, the South Florida weather, whatever it is you have to sacrifice it to see the results.”

That’s all of life, isn’t it? Anything worth doing comes with a requisite amount of sacrifice.

“I always tell rookies they’re already in a better position than I was at that point in my career. Some guys will listen, some won’t.”

Mentorship roles among players are rare in the NFL. Few veterans are willing to show a rookie the details that will essentially allow them to take the vet’s job. But how does the Dolphins’ legend feel about taking on a mentorship role?

“I’d say I enjoy it… ALMOST as much as football. It’s close. I can’t take my career with me when it’s gone. So the way that I can pass it on is by imparting my wisdom onto the younger guys. Their success brings me happiness.”

At age 36 a player’s sacrifice increases. Point to any athlete excelling in the most grueling sport’s league in existence and you’ll see the definition of hard work and determination starring back at you.

But this isn’t some new fad for Cameron Wake.

“Back in 2005 I made the decision to give up beer and fried food. When it’s 3rdand 10 and [that guy] is hurting or [this guy] is gassed, I’m ready to go. I know I have an extra step on him because I didn’t have that beer or that burger.”

How much production makes the sacrifice worth it? Well, to Cam Wake, the most minuscule results are worth all the hard work.

“If I get just one extra sack, it was all worth it. All of that stuff will be there when the game is gone. Partying, video games, pizza, girls, they’ll all be there, trust me.”

Wake also divulged on his idea of happiness. Freedom is happiness in the eyes of #91. After his playing career, you’ll likely find him on a mountain with poles in hand and skis on foot.

Cameron Wake is one of the most under-rated, under-appreciated pass rushers in the modern era. Consistently among the top pass-rush disrupters every single year, the NFL’s leading quarterback sacker dating back to 2009, he’s earned the reputation of one of the all-time greats.

Cameron Wake is an absolute treasure.

@WingfieldNFL

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Carlos

    June 14, 2018 at 9:35 pm

    Where do I put like to this story ??

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