FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- Former Miami Dolphins quarterback David Woodley, feeling "almost like I've got a second chance at life," held a news conference yesterday, just four days after undergoing a liver transplant.
With his doctors by his side, Woodley walked off an elevator at Willis-Knighton Medical Center in Shreveport, La., and spoke, along with his surgeon, Dr. Jim Piper, for about 20 minutes.
"I feel almost as good as before I went in," said Woodley, 33. "It's almost a miracle to me."
Woodley, who at 24 was the youngest quarterback to start a Super Bowl when the Dolphins lost, 27-17, to the Washington Redskins in 1983, underwent a 4 1/2 -hour liver transplant Sunday to reverse terminal liver disease. Less than 96 hours after the surgery, Piper was discussing plans for Woodley's release from the hospital.
"We hope to get him out of the hospital early next week," Piper said."Statistically, the chances of David living a perfectly normal life are 85 percent or better. Almost everyone has some rejection [after a transplant], but we can treat 98 to 99 percent of the rejections. For two months, there'll be no heavy lifting for David, but after the two months . . . there's really nothing he couldn't do."
Woodley has been living the past two years in his native Shreveport and working in his father's law firm while doing a radio sports show during the football season.