Former New England Patriots defensive tackle Vince Wilfork is a house of a human being. Standing at 6-foot-2 and weighing 325 pounds, Wilfork was an intimidating force for the Patriots during his 11-year run with the team.
Now a free agent after spending two seasons with the Houston Texans, Wilfork is opening up about his time with New England.
And it’s pretty glorious.
“We used to do this thing every Friday. Friday would be our cool-down day, a light practice, and we would always kick the ball off. We’d all cover the kick, like a kickoff team, and every day I would go to Bill and say ‘I’m going to make the tackle,'” Wilfork told Pardon My Take on Barstool Sports. “He’s like, ‘Oh, you’re not going to make the tackle.’ So every day we would bet some type of food or something — push-ups, anything. We would bet something if I would make the tackle or not. That tradition carried on throughout. They probably still do it now.”
In what can’t be considered a major surprise, Wilfork’s appearance on the podcast was to promote ribs as America’s food. A native of Boynton Beach in Florida, down home southern cooking was a staple of Wilfork’s existence growing up. That’s obviously represented in his massive frame as he looks for another opportunity to prove he can still be a viable NFL player.
Maybe the Patriots will go after their former first-round pick, attempting to entice him with a life-time supply of ribs. That could very well motivate the five-time Pro Bowler, even as he prepares to turn 36.
As it relates to Bill Belichick and the Pats, it would not be a surprise if they continued this tradition of motivation. New England seems hungry for a sixth Super Bowl of the Tom Brady era. We wouldn’t put it past Belichick to use food as a way to get the most from his players.