Watson and his knees

Posted by Darren Urban on April 12, 2010 – 3:39 pm

Someday, Gabe Watson expects, he will play healthy. He’s hoping that time is now.

The nose tackle’s freak accident two offseasons ago – in which he fell off a treadmill and broke his kneecap – created some career issues. He spent 2008 playing with pins and wires in his knee. Then last year he had surgery to take out those pins and wires, and had to build his knee up again. He said last year, he “was really playing on one leg.” He also started playing last season at 332 pounds – more than he wanted – and ended at 340 pounds. That end also came with an 80 percent MCL tear in his knee in the Saints’ playoff game. Surgery wasn’t needed, but rehab was, and a certain frustration came along with it.

“It’s football,” Watson said. “You’re going to get injured. You have to keep playing.”

Watson said he’s down about 30 pounds from the end of the season. He needs to build back up some muscle mass, but ideally, he’ll play at 315 or 320 pounds. That’ll help his quickness and agility, important at a position where he’s the starter for now, especially with veteran Bryan Robinson still un-signed and a question mark to return. But Watson is also doing it with an eye on his star-struck knees and also his post-football life.

“You have to take care of yourself and I am learning slowly but surely how to do it,” Watson said. “They say for every pound of weight you have, it’s three pounds of stress on your knees – so I’ve got a lot of stress on my knees. Hopefully it will help with all the injuries and the longer I will be able to go.”

Posted in Blog | 35 Comments »

35 Responses to “Watson and his knees”

  1. By Joe-B on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply

    I never heard about the MCL tear, hopefully he gets better.

  2. By MikeFlorio on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply

    Watson needs to do something other than fade out this year. Robinson is getting older, watson needs to step up or he aint makin the cut this year. Enough talk Watson Time to start makin an impact. Why do we keep this guy on the roster and let productive players slip away to free agency??? Watson needs to prove he belongs, running in the sand aint make me support his case.

  3. By Rich on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply


    Will Branch play nose or is he really going to be a tackle? Seems like he is still a question mark, as is Gabe. That doesn’t vode well for the middle of the line. We don’t seem to hear much about it. Even if we draft high at that position its still a rookie. Any runblings?


  4. By darrenurban on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply

    Rich —

    Branch clearly would rather play end. Yes, nose tackle is something of a concern in my mind.

  5. By Chris on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply

    Lets pray that Dan Williams is available when we go to pick so that we can either have a starter or a good backup from the get-go.

  6. By John on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply

    This is exactly why we will address the nose tackle position early in the draft. Although, I would wait till the 2nd or 3rd round, I wouldnt be surprised if they take Terrence “MT” Cody with the 26th pick.

    Wouldn’t everyone agree that there is a legit starter at every position except ILB (not sold on Lenon) and NT (Watson is a backup) ? I guess you could argue the offensive Tackle spot also but I think Johnson emerges as a pretty good player.

    This is why a perfect draft would be Sean Weatherspoon at 26 to play ILB and Torrell Troup or Cam Thomas at NT in the 2nd.

    The draft is next week. Can’t wait.

  7. By Ross on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply

    unrelated, but how about a story on how Beanie and Tim are on the verge of becoming a dominant tandem in the league?


  8. By darrenurban on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply

    Ross —

    I am sure that will be a story, but maybe not until camp.

  9. By lemar on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply

    when he was playing he was doing his job.i had sundat thicket so i seen that

  10. By CMacyn on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply

    If he goes he goes but I think we have a freak in Kelien Dykes

  11. By darthcard on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply

    I never questioned gabes heart. Unfortunately he has been hurt. I wish him health. There’s times i’ve seen him flash and times he has been washed out of plays. Seeing the injuries he has sustained i and probably every cardinal fan should be thankful for the effort.

  12. By Patrick on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply

    Guess what position will be high in the draft?

  13. By Ctownbeatdown on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply

    This is a guy that i always root for. I have met him and he is a very nice guy, and really loves to play football. He always plays hard, even when he is not a hundred percent. I would like us to pick up a nose tackle in the draft, but that’s just because we need depth. Good luck Gabe.

  14. By brazilian fan on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply

    darren… please… a brazilian football fan trying to get the game… (nobody here knows absolutely nothing about football)
    the cards defense is predominantly 3-4, right? that means that a nose tackle in a package like that lets our big money DT out, right? and he’s gonna appear only in 4 linemen formations? or he will also play in 3-4? how’s gonna that work, if NT is a so huge concern in the draft?

  15. By darrenurban on Apr 13, 2010 | Reply

    Brazilian —

    A nose tackle is very important in a 3-4. The Cards don’t have a “big-money” DT. Watson, Robinson and sometimes Branch are the NT. Darnell Dockett is essentially a 3-4 DE, just like Calais Campbell.

  16. By Eric on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply

    Mike Florio really sounds like his namesake in his post. Letting productive players go and having him on the roster do not go hand-in-hand when those productive players are at other positions. You make it sound like this guy is a 30 year old veteran, in reality he is still a young player who had a fairly serious injury early in his career.

  17. By cahongisto on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply

    So darren-

    Do you think looking ahead the possibility of a lock out next season in 2011 will change the ways teams draft this year? And what kind of problems can arise from a lockout season?

  18. By darrenurban on Apr 13, 2010 | Reply

    Cahong —

    I do not think the lockout changes how teams draft. It has changed free agency for sure, but it won’t change the draft. As far as problems, I’d have to know how long the lockout lasts to even guess at the fallout.

  19. By AndyStandsUp on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply

    John,I have my mock going the same way(Weatherspoon and Thomas).

    Darren, are the Cards using Robinson as a safety net in case the desired NT isn’t available, or is he finished for Az?

  20. By darrenurban on Apr 13, 2010 | Reply

    AndyStands —

    I think Robinson is still in play, but I think this has more to do with a veteran trying to decide if he wants to keep playing more than the Cards waiting on the draft.

  21. By alex u on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply

    Torrel Troup 2nd round would be nice

  22. By Coach Carlsen on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply

    I think that we need to go with value here in the draft, and avoid another panicky Bryant Johnson type selection. When your run the 3-4 you can’t really have too many linebackers. I really am content with campbell (who has been a great draft choice so far), watson/robinson, and obviously dockett. I do, however, wish that Branch would morph back into superbeast Michigan mode and play nose for us (why can’t he do this?). If just ONE of those legit OLB pass rushers or an ILB is available, do not hesitate, let’s take them. Does everyone remember how the Giants won that Super Bowl 3 years ago? They do not win without that relentless pass rush (Strahan, Osi, Kiwanuka, Tuck). I know we added Porter (I am happy about that), but let’s get as nasty as possible, get after the opposing QB and be able to sit that extra guy or two in coverage.

  23. By CARDSFAN1178124 on Apr 12, 2010 | Reply


  24. By John on Apr 13, 2010 | Reply

    If your taking suggestions for stories, I think a story on a players typical home game week schedule would be interesting. To see how much time and effort is put into getting ready from the end of one game on Sunday, to the kickoff of the next.

  25. By Shannon Robinson on Apr 13, 2010 | Reply

    It’s not like you don’t have enough to work on – however I’d appreciate some background on our lesser known players on the roster: Ryan Kees, Trumaine McBride, Nehemiah Broughton, Reagan Mauia (yes I’ve seen the wall smasher video), Jonathon Palmer, Tom Pestock, Mark Washington, H-D Jones, Ed Gant, Keilen Dykes and Onrea Jones. These guys may or may not be special but I’d like to know something about them before camp. Thanks for what you do for the fans. A tip of the Cards’ wing to Gabe Watson for the courage he brings to our team.

  26. By darrenurban on Apr 13, 2010 | Reply

    Shannon, John —

    Thanks for the ideas.

  27. By CardsRep928 on Apr 13, 2010 | Reply

    He was a monster in our super bowl run…Hope he gets better he and dykes are exactly what we need to hog real estate in the middle…

  28. By Rich on Apr 13, 2010 | Reply

    I was on a plane from Orange Cty to Phoenix last week and could have sworn that Kreider was sitting in first class. Is he still in play at fullback?

  29. By darrenurban on Apr 13, 2010 | Reply

    Rich —

    Yes, I think he is still in play.

  30. By Wampag on Apr 13, 2010 | Reply

    hey D hope all is well Dolphins shopping Ginn you think he could devolp under the right staff and you think Whiz or graves even look his way?

  31. By darrenurban on Apr 13, 2010 | Reply

    Wampag —

    I like the idea of having a return man and a burner at WR. But what would the Dolphins want?

  32. By Wampag on Apr 13, 2010 | Reply

    D- yeah i couldn’t figure that out either maybe they’ll be nice because of Dansby lol….you hear Rolle got realeased by the ravens I know he is 33 and has epilipsy and a bad neck but he was great in his day even for a tutoring aspect what do you think?

  33. By darrenurban on Apr 13, 2010 | Reply

    Wampag —

    I think, once again, you don’t take old players who have been injured.

  34. By Ditship on Apr 13, 2010 | Reply

    I remember after his rookie season Gabe was getting into great shape and really looking like he might be a force on our D.. then the injury happened. It’s tragic because he really seems like a great guy. I’m hoping he can show up this season like he did in 2007 (when Dockett put up his best numbers which I think had a lot to do with Gabe). I do think our best move is going after a NT in the first two rounds though. The position is key to a successful 3-4 Defense.

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