NFL players rarely publicly discuss what they go through to get back on the field. As some have described, they go through 16 car wrecks a year, and that’s just the regular season.
Pain meds and intravenous therapy are a regular part of playing in the NFL.
“Any kind of pain pill, I’m looped,” the Titans tight end said on the podcast, via Paul Kuharsky of paulkuharsky.com. You can tell me the play, and I’ll run the wrong play. . . .That s— made me feel like I was on crack.”
Walker and Lewan, the Titans left tackle, both talked about the dangers of IVs, which commonly are used on game day.
“If you get a certain amount of CCs of air in your blood system — like 100 CCs will kill you,” Lewan said. “If you get enough, it will make your heart dilate in a certain way.”
Walker apparently referenced a 2016 preseason game against the Raiders in Oakland when he left the game in the first quarter with what the team called “a loss of breath.”
“Yeah,” said Walker. “I got fluid in my lungs and damn near died almost in the game. The guy just wasn’t paying attention and the fluid was out so air seeped into my. . . .”
Lewan described “burping the bag” to minimize the potential for air bubbles in an IV. Walker said during his episode he became bloated and knew something wasn’t right.
Lewan suspects he had something similar during a Week Three game against Jacksonville last year. He received an IV after throwing up pregame.
“I got an IV, and I was feeling like the only reason it might be the IV was because the way you [Walker] were telling me, shortness of breath, I could barely breathe,” Lewan said. “I don’t really get tired during games, my conditioning is really good, and so I thought to myself, ‘Something is wrong.’ I started to come back to in the second half of the game. The first half, I was all f—– up.”