Stedman Bailey endured two gunshot wounds to the head in November. It’s February, and the Rams receiver already vows a return to the field.
“Since that incident, doctors have told me that they don’t think I’ll be able to make a return to the NFL,” Bailey noted in a video about his recovery. “When somebody tells me that they don’t think I can do something, you know I’ll do everything that I can to prove them wrong.”
The video shows Bailey catching balls, performing ladder drills, and pumping iron. Bailey admits a “huge dropoff in how much weight I can lift” and that his “neurosurgeon was extremely concerned about me making a return to the NFL.” Nevertheless, he believes he will be back in the NFL.
“I feel like I got so much more in me,” Bailey maintains. “I want to at least have a ten-year career. After three years, I feel I have a lot left in my tank.”
Bailey made 12 catches for 182 yards this season before a drug suspension sidelined him. While serving that suspension back home in Florida, the shooting occurred in Miami Gardens.
“Some guys just pulled up and was doing some things across the street from where my friend lives,” Bailey remembers. “Eventually, [they] just opened fire shooting into the car that I was sitting at. I was shot in the head two times. My cousin was shot 11 times.”
Bailey points to his three-year-old son and God as inspirations for him. “In my life, I pretty much have three priorities that I always look for to take care of firsthand,” he explains. “Number one is God, number two is family, and three is football.”
Bailey spends much of his time these days with his son, in the gym, and in his church. He believes the faith he embraces in church can help him make his way back to the field.
“Faith is a big thing,” Bailey contends. “You have faith in something, a lot of good things can happen for you.”