As a wide receiver for the Green Bay Packers, Donald Driver has had his share of on-the-field injuries.
Now, as the NFL star takes on “Dancing with the Stars,” he’s realized the potential for wounds is equally as threatening.
“They’re about the same — I mean, on the football field you can twist an ankle, in dancing you can twist an ankle,” Donald told Access Hollywood when asked how football and dancing injuries compare at his and professional partner Peta Murgatroyd’s “DWTS” rehearsal in Los Angeles on Wednesday. “You can get a shoulder injury trying to pick someone up, you can get a shoulder injury by playing football and getting hit.
“So, it all transitions-- just in a different way,” he added. “But I haven’t done anything wrong at this point and I hope I don’t, so I’m pretty healthy and I’m hoping I can stay that way.”
The 37-year-old athlete has had an incredible journey – at one point during his childhood, Donald was living in a U-Haul trailer, and now, he’s an integral part of a successful NFL team and starring on one of reality TV’s hottest competitions.
“God has taken me to a higher place — more than anyone else could take me,” a grateful Donald told Access of his success. “I have a great family and a great supporting cast and when you have that it makes you a better man, you know? “
Adding, “I’ve always told people that I don’t want to be remembered as a great football player, but as a great husband, a great father, and a great Christian man and I think if that stands the [test of time] then I’ve done a great job.”
As for whether he’ll follow in the footsteps of fellow NFL star-turned-“DWTS”-champion Hines Ward, Donald says he’s not quite ready to hang up his cleats just yet.
“He’s a great man, great football player,” Donald said of Hines, who announced his retirement the field on Tuesday. “I think the National Football League will miss him and his fans will truly miss him. He’s a legend, so my hat goes off to him.
“Hines is a good friend of mine, so I will miss him as well,” he continued, adding, “I’m not ready, Hines. I’m not done yet. I will be behind you soon though!”
Catch Donald and Peta’s ballroom action on “Dancing with the Stars” – Mondays at 8/7c and Tuesdays at 9/8c on ABC.