When Jon Weeks signed his first NFL contract on April 28, 2010, it was hard for him to imagine what his career would look like.
“I didn’t,” Weeks said in an interview with Texans TV. “I think I was just so happy to actually sign, I was just trying to take it day by day and just take advantage of all my opportunities.”
Weeks, in training to be an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) at the time, didn’t know that he would play through that contract and sign an extension after that. He also didn’t know that he’d be headed to Hawaii for his first Pro Bowl appearance among the league’s best. However, Weeks is quick to credit the leadership of former and current teammates who have helped him along the way.
“I’ve been fortunate enough when I got in, to work with some really good guys, Neil (Rackers) and Matt Turk,” Weeks said. “They took me under their wing and they showed me how to be a pro and I think that’s really helped me to continue my career. Then having the opportunity to work with guys like Shane Lechler and Nick Novak and even other veterans like Donnie Jones and Shayne Graham has really, really helped me.”
Weeks has handled a total of 926 extra point, field goal, and punt snaps in his NFL career. In 2015, he also had a career-high eight special teams tackles. In addition to his long-snapping duties, the six-year veteran has worked hard in the offseason to excel in those other areas.
“I think the position is starting to evolve,” Weeks said. “It’s no longer being able to get the ball back there to the punter, you’ve got to be able to protect and you’ve got to be able to go down there and make plays with the guys on team. And it’s important to me that I keep getting better at my position and if that means I have to get better in coverage, it’s something I focused really hard on this offseason.”
Six years later, Weeks hasn’t had to rely on his E.M.T. training. From a walk-on at Baylor to a tryout for the Texans, he has not taken much for granted but, for now, the hard work has earned him a well-deserved trip to Hawaii.
“It’s huge, to go down there and to be able to go down there and represent the city of Houston and this organization that’s given me a chance to play the game I love to play,” Weeks said. “It’s a big deal to me and I’m really excited to go out there and do that.”
Weeks and DeAndre Hopkins will represent the Houston Texans in the 2016 Pro Bowl which kicks off Sunday, Jan. 31 at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu.