The NFL – A Bunch of Mama’s Boys
Weekends are great. Sometimes I get to lay around, watch TV and eat rows and rows of Ritz crackers. Other times I find myself at a big table wolfing down ossobuco with an NFL Pro-Bowler. Last weekend it was the latter.
I hated to be that guy, but I was dying to know how he got there. To the NFL. Besides the obvious physical differences busting out of his tshirt, there had to be something else. So I started where most of you would, with “When did you know?”
Right? Isn’t that the thing? Where was the pivot where he knew that he had a shot? That he could be that guy who millions cheered for on Sunday? The guy raking in the big bucks while playing his favorite game?
The idea came to him during his junior year in college. A scout was in the stands to watch an opposing player and once the game was over went up to his coach and told him that his player needed to stay clean and keep working because he was going to be in the NFL someday.
So he did. And his senior year he started to see evidence. He doubled down his effort. Got his parents and his coach behind him. Hired an agent. Went to camps.
Then Draft Day came.
He wasn’t selected.
But that was ok. He knew that might happen and he considered it a good thing because he would get to choose the teams he tried out for. He looked at his position. He looked at the depth charts. He made his choice and made it to camp.
Then got cut.
I asked what his parents thought during this journey and he said, “When I got cut my Dad said, ‘Well, what are you going to do now? For a job?’ but my Mom never wavered. She never doubted for a second that I’d be in the NFL.”
I love that because it’s my core belief that in order to reach great heights, you need someone in your corner. Someone who never doubts. So I asked if he thought that was common in the NFL. Did he find that most of his teammates had someone in their corner? Someone who never wavered?
“Absolutely,” he said between bites. “Greg, we’re all a bunch of Mama’s boys.”