For those of you sports movie buffs, you will (hopefully) recognize this quote from Gene Hackman in 'The Replacements'. Hackman is the coach of a team of replacement players playing during a profession (American) football strike. The 'Replacements' are stuck playing a team full of pros in the final game, and Hackman asks his QB to come back (the regular guy had come back) because he has heart. But this is a trait we love to see in players, but it is one of those traits that is hard to quantify, and harder to see the results. Look at Tim Tebow in the 2011 NFL season... The dude completed less than half of his passes, and most of those he did complete seemed to be late in games. But that's just it... he got the job done late in games. Tebow, in 14 games (11 starts), lead 5 4th quarter comebacks and 6 game winning drives. Do the math there folks, close to half the games he played in... he found a way to win in the last quarter... usually on the last drive. A guy who is likely going to be out of the NFL 2 years later, because he has a terrible throwing motion, and really doesn't have the type of style that succeeds in the NFL. That's heart. There is no reason why he should have succeeded in the NFL, but he did anyway. Another example, the St. Louis Cardinals went 2 years, and several (5+) elimination games consecutively without losing one. And in most of those games, the Cardinals trailed... late in the game... and they still kept winning. Down 2 with one strike to go in the World Series... No problem. Down big early when your ace gets knocked out... No sweat. Rookie SS and lifetime .230 hitter separating you from a long winter... That's a winner folks. Statistically speaking, that shouldn't happen... but that's the great thing about heart... the numbers don't matter to it. The critics just fuel it. Whatever happens outside of the clubhouse/ locker room, doesn't matter. The only thing that matters is how bad you want it. Ask the Colts and #Chuckstrong. They had no business being in the playoffs with that roster... but don't tell them that, because they were there. They had a reason to fight, a reason to believe. That is why we love Jackie Robinson, not because he was a career .311 hitter, its the fact that he had the heart, fortitude, courage to stand up to the establishment. To take the abuse he took to change the game we all love... and to handle it with class. As seen in the movie '42' to have the guts to not fight back. To beat them with his play... and show them that nothing else mattered.
Thanks for reading ladies and gents,
T.O. signing out