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Ravens Safety Eric Weddle Says He's Entering His Prime


Eric Weddle is 31 years old. He's gone to three Pro Bowls.

And in his mind, he's just getting started.

Asked in “The Lounge” podcast whether he's entering the prime of his career, Weddle didn't hesitate.

"Oh definitely," he said.

"I've never been not sore in camp ever in my career until now. I think you hit your peak muscle and strength in your mid-30s. Statistics show that."

Weddle was graded as the 12th-best safety in the NFL last year by Pro Football Focus (PFF). Before that, ever since 2010, Weddle has ranked in PFF's top five safeties, and was No. 1 in 2014 and 2012.

Last year, Weddle didn't have any interceptions and finished with 78 tackles, which was his lowest mark since he was a rookie and wasn't starting in 2007.

A major reason for that is injuries. Weddle had started all 16 games for five straight years from 2010 to 2014. Last year, he dealt with a groin injury through much of the year and didn't play in the final three games. He was placed on injured reserve for the regular-season finale even though he insisted he was healthy enough to play.

"Last year was my first injury season really my whole career," he said.

Weddle isn't feeling any ill effects from that injury now, and he's been flying around the demanding training camp practices in Baltimore. Entering his 10th season, Weddle has no intentions of hanging it up anytime soon. He signed a four-year contract with the Ravens.

"Until I'm out there at practice and guys are running past me and I'm not gloving guys up, which hasn't happened, then I'll just be like, 'Here you go, I can't do it anymore,'" Weddle said. "But there's no reason why I can't go out and be the best this year."

Weddle still has the drive. He said he's always the first player to arrive at the Under Armour Performance Center. He gets to work at about 5:30 a.m. each morning.

"I just always say you can sleep when you're dead," Weddle said. "If I can get five hours of sleep, I'm straight."

For more from "The Lounge" interview with Weddle, subscribe on iTunes or find it wherever you get your podcasts.

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