Vonnie Holliday knew he was getting close.
“I was just thinking about that [Monday night] because I saw my buddy (Chargers linebacker) Takeo Spikes hit the 200-game mark. I can’t believe he beat me to it.”
Holliday will play in his 200th career regular season game this week in New England.
“That’s big,” the defensive end said. “It’s an honor.”
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Holliday will be just the 11th active player (non-kickers) to have reached that career milestone.
“Year in and year out,” he said recalling a recent conversation with fellow 1998 draftee Peyton Manning, “watching guys come and go, working out in the off-season, talking to guys and working out with guys who are scratching and clawing and trying to find a way to get back into the league, I don’t take it for granted.”
Holliday is in his 15th season, second with the Cardinals.
“I’ve been blessed with the opportunities but also with just physically being able to gear up and mentally go in each year and prepare—which is the hardest part, the off-season, the workouts and psychologically working your way through all those hot days in the summer to get to training camp, which is another grind and then to make it through a season. I’m very happy about that. It’s something I’m honored about.”
Holliday, the 19th overall pick of the Packers, briefly considered retirement after last season.
But now, what’s next? 220 games? Perhaps 230?
“Hey,” he said laughing, “let’s just be thankful with 200 and let’s see what happens after that.”