Player Spotlight: Roger Wehrli, Representing The Arizona Cardinals
Written by Laura Beshire
Roger Wehrli will be representing the Arizona Cardinals for Taste of the NFL this year alongside chef Eddie Matney from Eddie's House restaurant. Wehrli spent the entirety of his 14-year NFL career with the St. Louis Cardinals as a cornerback. He was elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2007 and will join our decorated roster of HOF players at this year’s Party With a Purpose. During his career, Wehrli was a fast and powerful CB, originating the football term “Shutdown Corner.” He had 40 career interceptions and 19 recovered fumbles. We are very excited to have another incredibly talented athlete join us in New Orleans this year! Q: What have you been up to following your football career? A: I joined a fraternity brother in a business forms manufacturing company in 1983; I just retired from that position this year. Q: What is your favorite Super Bowl memory? A: It would have to be attending the first Super Bowl appearance by the Arizona Cardinals when they nearly beat the Steelers in February 2009. Q: Which NFL team did you grow up cheering for? A: Kansas City Chiefs, having grown up in a small town about 90 miles from Kansas City. My parents would have loved for me to have been drafted by a team that close to home, but I still stayed in Missouri with the St Louis Cardinals. Q: Which teams have a shot at making it to the Super Bowl this year? A: Well, certainly there is still a long list this year as there seem to be a lot of teams that could get hot toward the end of the season. But Green Bay, Atlanta, Giants and the Patriots are still looking good. Q: Out of the many interceptions you achieved during your career, does one stand out as more memorable than the others, if so—which one? A: It would have to be our first Monday night football appearance against the Dallas Cowboys in 1971, in Dallas, with Don Meredith and Howard Cosell handling the announcing duties. I had two interceptions in our 38 - 0 victory over a team who later went on to play in the Super Bowl that season. Q: What was the best part about being inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame? A: Aside from having our whole family and many friends be able to attend and enjoy all the events surrounding the induction weekend, I think the best part has been getting to know all those great players I played with and against during my career on a more personal level and sharing a place of football history with them. It’s a great group of guys and wonderful athletes. Q: Can you think of a significant way the game has changed since you were in the NFL? A: I think the rule changes over the years have made the game become more passing friendly and also less of a violent sport. Q: How did you get involved with Taste of the NFL? A: I replaced the Cardinal player who was to be the representative during the year the Cardinals were in the Super Bowl. I have also attended the Taste of NFL event in Canton at the Hall of Fame. Q: What do you think you will enjoy most about being involved with Taste of the NFL? A: It’s a great event with excellent chefs bringing excellent food for us all to enjoy along with the wine samplings. I enjoy meeting the people who come for pictures and autographs. Q: Why should fans attend Taste of the NFL in New Orleans this year? A: Because it is a fun event for foodies and wine lovers. The live entertainment has been awesome as well. It’s a great way for fans to see some of their favorite players up close and personal.