Jenny Winston and her husband, Eric, pose for a photo after the first day of training camp practice.
EDITOR'S NOTE: HoustonTexans.com is pleased to introduce fans to Jenny Winston, the wife of starting right tackle Eric Winston. She provides periodic diary entries on a range of topics to give fans a woman's perspective on the NFL and life off the field.
There are no two words that scare an NFL player more than "Training" and "Camp." If you choose to join the two words together around a group of players, you will hear more moaning and groaning than a bunch of women at a ladies brunch talking about the devastation of changing from a size 2 to a size 4.
Every team in the National Football League takes full advantage of this three-week event called Training Camp to conduct a crash course in "PLAYBOOK 101." They also conduct experimental labs like "9-on-7," and prepare for carefully choreographed, oral presentations led by the incoming freshman (otherwise known as the rookies) at commencement. Whoever said football players are all biceps obviously doesn't know what they're talking about!
There are very subtle actions that occur around the Winston household that serve as reminders that "T-DAY" is almost here. Most noticeable would be Eric's sly, carefree attitude in regard to what's for dinner. I have to say it truly does amaze me to see a 300-pound native Texan eat salad with grilled chicken every night for more than a week to drop weight. It's drastic actions like these that lead me to believe that if you look up dedication in the dictionary, you might just find Eric's name there. =)
I know it may sound a bit odd to send your husband off to summer camp, but I have a sneaking suspicion that there are no arts or crafts done at Reliant Stadium. The one feature of Training Camp that may be reminiscent of summer camp as a kid may be the community sleeping quarters at the stadium. Because the players are required to stay on campus at Reliant Stadium until they break for the night, my sources tell me that a highly air conditioned, dark room exists that is fully lined with air mattresses for mid-day naps. I'll tell you what - that's one way to bring a group of guys closer!
All jokes aside, as an NFL wife, I just want my husband to stay healthy and try his best to secure a spot on the roster. The practices I have seen can be a battle at times with veteran players trying to keep their jobs as well as the quieter guys just trying to get a shot to star in the big show on Sundays. I truly hope that in the midst of all this competition, each player can find a way to have a little fun in between sprints and meetings. After all, I'm sure if you can make it through camp, you can make it through anything. =)
I'm glad that I spent the last week conducting surprise "1-on-1" running drills in our family room just to keep Eric on his toes and to refresh his dusty blocking skills. I am confident he's ready now. Training camp should be a breeze for No. 73, right?
Thanks so much for taking the time to read my diary entry! I would encourage all fans to come out to catch some preseason practices (click here for information). Let's give the Texans the support that they need this season to get to the playoffs where they belong! Until next time...Go Texans! =)