Thursday, February 4, 2010
Catching up with Watters, NFC West alumni
By Mike Sando
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- The NFLPA's annual Super Bowl news conference doubled as reunion for players with ties to current NFC West teams.
Eight of the 15 current and former players on the stage spent all or part of their careers with the Rams, Seahawks, Cardinals or 49ers. Each is actively representing the NFLPA as the league and its players head toward an uncapped year and possible lockout.
"More than anything, what I feel my role can be is educating some of these younger players," former 49ers and Seahawks running back Ricky Watters said. "I was able to do a good job of keeping my money. I have a good life and a great family. When I talk to a lot of the younger guys, they look at me as kind of the tough guy, the rebel guy, but I want them to know I was always tough and all that, but at the same time, intelligence is the whole thing."
Watters thinks too many players are living beyond their means without knowing it. As the NFL and the NFLPA head toward a possible lockout, Watters said it's important for the union to make sure players are prepared for what awaits if the league shuts down.
A quick look at the eight players and the current NFC West teams for which they play or played:
- Walt Harris, CB (49ers). Rehabbing from knee surgery and hoping to re-sign with the 49ers or play for another team.
- Watters, RB (49ers, Seahawks). Retired and living in Orlando with his wife and their 8-year-old son.
- Kevin Carter, DE (Rams). Retired.
- Ernie Conwell, TE (Rams). Retired and living in Tennessee.
- Kevin Mawae, C (Seahawks). Titans starter.
- Pete Kendall, G (Seahawks, Cardinals). Retired unless a team calls and requests his services.
- Leonard Weaver, FB (Seahawks). Eagles starter.
- Dwayne White, OL (Rams). Retired.
Former players Barry Sanders, Nolan Harrison, Ki-Jana Carter, Mike McBath, Ben Utt and Mark Bruener joined current Texans guard Chester Pitts among the 15 players.