Sean Considine acknowledged he had at least three concussions during his days as an NFL safety and special teams demon, including two in the preseason a year ago that sent him to the sidelines.
His mind worked like a steel trap, however, when he had the opportunity to bust my chops a bit prior to a friendly round of golf Monday afternoon at PrairieView Golf Course in Byron.
Considine’s mother, Colleen, saved newspaper clippings from the Telegraph leading up to this year’s Super Bowl between Considine’s Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers. Included in the clippings were our staff’s picks, and the only person to go with the Ravens was sports editor Dan Woessner.
The rest of us – me, Ty Reynolds, Christopher Heimerman and Larry Brennan – each predicted the 49ers would win.
“How could you guys do that?” the 31-year-old Considine said. “Here there’s somebody local in the game, and everybody goes with the 49ers. Especially Ty. We both went to Iowa, and we go way back.”
Not quite 2 weeks ago, I ran into one of Considine’s neighbors in Byron, Gregg DeVries, at a wedding in Rockford. I explained to him this cool summer project, Links With Locals. I thought Sean Considine and his younger brother, Ryan, would be good candidates to golf with.
Sean is someone who doesn’t seek the spotlight, but is generous with his time for the right situation. I gave Gregg a few selling points, mainly that I went to Amboy High School with Sean and Ryan’s father, Rick, and there would be a lot interest in what they were up to.
A few days later, I got a text from Gregg saying the Considines were on board, and a game was set up for Monday.
Golf, I came to find out, does not rank too high on Sean’s priority list, and with good reason. He and his wife, Nicole, have four children – Caden, 5, and triplets Hadley, Cohen and Corben, 23 months. Another child is on the way, with Nicole due in September.
Nine holes would have to do, he explained, because Caden had a baseball game later that day.
“I hope you’re not expecting too much out of me today,” he said. “I haven’t played in a couple of years.”
Family and football occupied the bulk of Considine’s time in the past, but that is quickly changing. For the first time since he was taken in the fourth round of the 2005 draft by the Philadelphia Eagles, he is not on an NFL roster.
He’ll likely be part of the Byron football staff in some capacity this fall, to assist one of his former high school teammates, head coach Jeff Boyer, who quarterbacked the Tigers to the state crown in 1999. Considine has no plans to continue playing, even if some NFL team called today with an offer.
“Nobody loved playing professional football more than I did,” he said, “but I just missed too many things with my family. It’s time for me to be at home, and that’s what I plan to do.”
A few early worm-burners and wayward slices showed the rust in Sean’s golf game, but there were some awesome shots mixed in there as well. My guess is, if he wanted to be a good golfer, he could be, but he’s much more interested in slaying various animals at the family hunting grounds south of Amboy for his recreation.
Ryan, 27, was the more solid golfer of the Considine brothers, and he works at his game. A one-time baseball player at Iowa, he doesn’t even play rec league softball anymore, and golfs twice a week in leagues at PrairieView.
“The Wednesday league, it’s just for fun and to hang out with some buddies,” he said, “but Thursday is more competitive. I’m working at it.”
The four of us played the back nine at PrairieView and, when Sean departed, Ryan, Gregg and I played as much of the front nine as possible. After hitting our tee shots on No. 6, however, a storm that had been brewing all afternoon quickly closed in on Byron, and we headed back to the clubhouse, arriving just before all hell broke loose.
“Storms are absolutely the No. 1 thing I’m afraid of,” said Ryan, who spent plenty of time checking the radar on his phone through the afternoon. “When there’s a bad storm, I don’t even leave the house to go to work.”
A pair of area senior golfers recently had awesome accomplishments of note.
Roger DeVries (Gregg’s father) of Milledgeville equaled his age of 74 in a round at Rock River Golf and Pool in Rock Falls. He later beat it with a 72.
Lost Nation resident Ron Mangini equaled his age of 77 at Lost Nation Golf Club.
Congrats to Roger and Ron!
A few local courses turned in results from Lincoln Highway qualifiers this past weekend.
The Emerald Hill men’s squad will consist of Andrew and Nathan Blackburn, Josh Kunde, Ryan Hurley, Jerry Burgess and Evan Eissens.
The Sunset Golf Course six will be Scott Aken, Brian Anderson, yours truly, Miles Beske, Pat Marshall and Jeff Johnson. Aken, by the way, carded a 7-under-par score of 137 (67-70) to roll to his first club championship win.