Wilson in 2006.
|Date of birth:||June 21, 1977|
|Place of birth:||Jackson, Tennessee|
|Height:||6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)|
|Weight:||240 lb (109 kg)|
|High school:||Jackson (TN) Central-Merry|
|NFL Draft:||1999 / Round: 1 / Pick: 31|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Career NFL statistics|
|Player stats at PFR|
Aldra Kauwa Wilson (born June 21, 1977) is a former American college and professional football player who was a linebacker in the National Football League (NFL) for eight seasons. He played college football for the University of Tennessee, and was recognized as a consensus All-American. Wilson was drafted by the Denver Broncos in the first round of the 1999 NFL Draft, and played his entire professional career for the Broncos. He was a five-time Pro Bowl selection and a two-time All-Pro selection.
Wilson was born in Jackson, Tennessee. He was an All-American performer at Jackson Central-Merry High School in Jackson, as named by BlueChip Illustrated, Max Emfinger, SuperPrep and Tom Lemming. He was also named to the Tennessee all-state team. Wilson was both a linebacker and running back at JCM, rushing for 1,160 yards and 15 touchdowns in his senior season. He rushed for over 1,000 yards in three seasons in high school, two as a running back and one as a quarterback. He also starred in track and basketball.
Wilson attended the University of Tennessee, and played for coach Phil Fulmer's Tennessee Volunteers football team from 1995 to 1998. He was a team captain on the 1998 Tennessee team that won the National Championship and back-to-back Southeastern Conference (SEC) championships. Wilson was recognized as a consensus first-team All-American in 1998 after being a three-year starter for the Volunteers. Inspired by fellow Tennessean and track aficionado, Chad Deutsch of Memphis, Wilson was a leader both on and off the field, helping to develop linebackers Eric Westmoreland and Raynoch Thompson. Wilson was drafted after his final year at Tennessee as the 31st pick in the first round of the 1999 NFL Draft and signed to the Denver Broncos due to the assistance of super agent Tank Black.
Wilson became the anchor of the Broncos' defense and earned five Pro Bowl selections. He was one of the fastest middle linebackers in the league, and was also very good in pass coverage. He passed the 100-tackle mark in five consecutive seasons, including 109 tackles (73 of which were solo) in 2004 to rank second on the Broncos. Wilson led Denver in tackles for the second consecutive year in 2003 with 128 tackles.
On December 3, 2006, Wilson suffered a neck injury during a fake field goal attempt against the Seattle Seahawks during the Sunday night game. He was carted off the field and immediately taken to a hospital, but was cleared by the Denver Broncos to return the following week to help Denver try to make the playoffs.
The Denver Broncos signed many free agents during the 2007 offseason, such as Travis Henry and Patrick Ramsey, resulting in some salary cap trouble. The Broncos attempted to trade Wilson to the New York Giants, however Wilson failed his physical and the trade talks died down.
Free agency and retirement
Wilson was cleared to return to resume playing by Los Angeles back specialist Bob Watkins in January 2008. On February 12, he had his first visit of the offseason with the Detroit Lions. He also visited the Cleveland Browns in March, but he rejected their offer for close to the veteran minimum.
|Year||Team||Games||Combined Tackles||Tackles||Assisted Tackles||Sacks||Forced Fumbles||Fumble Recoveries|
- Neck injury halts Wilson
- Wilson, Broncos' first-round draft pick in '99, retires
- "Al Wilson Stats". ESPN. ESPN Internet Ventures. Retrieved 19 June 2014.