Antoine Winfield knew what his Minnesota Vikings' teammates needed last week after finishing the season with a disappointing 3-13 record.
Winfield, after all, had been through a 3-13 season with the Buffalo Bills in 2001, his third year in the league.
"What we need to do now is get away from the game, relax, train and be ready for next year," Winfield said.
While many of the Vikings did have plans to get away for a while, Winfield wasn't one of them. Winfield received his unexpected rest when he was lost for the season on Nov. 14 with a broken collarbone. Finally recovered, Winfield planned to start lifting weights last week for the first time since his injury.
"I feel great, 100 percent," Winfield said last Monday as the rest of his teammates were clearing out their lockers and making offseason plans. "It's been, what, six weeks since I had the surgery. I'll be back in here early tomorrow starting rehab, so I'll be good."