Leading up to the Super Bowl LII kick-off, no one would have predicted the offensive explosion from the Patriots and especially the Eagles. In a game that broke the record for the most yards ever in a post-season game, there were also a couple of unlikely heroes.
Doug Pederson, the head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles and Nick Foles, the Eagles’ quarterback, orchestrated an incredible post-season and Super Bowl script that could be one for the movies.
Pederson was a career back-up in the NFL, most notably behind Brett Favre in Green Bay. Nick Foles was close to retiring from the NFL after one fabulous year in Philadelphia under Chip Kelly and then being bounced from a starter to a back-up QB looking for employment. Foles made a faith-based decision to give football one more chance with the Eagles as a back-up QB. He wanted to be sure he gave it everything he had before leaving the game and he wanted to be part of a team being coached by someone who showed confidence and faith in his ability, character, and leadership. That coach was Doug Pederson.
As this duo entered this 2017 season, no one could have predicted the path the Eagles would take to a Super Bowl victory. The starting QB of the Eagles, Carson Wentz, was on his way to a potential Offensive Player of the Year award until a season-ending injury sidelined him.
The Eagles were in first place and the loss of their starting QB deflated the whole city, but not the head coach or its players. Nick Foles was thrown into the starting role. His faith in his ability and his coaches’ belief was evident to the team; they rallied around their new quarterback.
If a public opinion poll was taken at this point there would have been few who would have given the Eagles a chance at the playoffs, and fewer who would have even expected one win if they did make post-season play.
With the creative, confident, and aggressive play-calling of Doug Pederson combined with the calm and confidence of Nick Foles, the Eagles marched their way into Super Bowl LII. They were facing a perennial Super Bowl contender led by the best QB and head coach tandem ever in the NFL: Tom Brady and Bill Belichick.
Tom Brady vs. Nick Foles and Bill Belichick vs. Doug Pederson – not much of a contest, one would have thought.
From the Eagles’ opening drive, it became apparent this team was being led by a crafty, confident play caller in Pederson and marched up and down the field by a newly found magician in the QB position. Foles magically maneuvered his way in the pocket to avoid rushers and deliver pinpoint accurate passes to his receivers for first down after first down. The result was a prolific performance vs. the Patriots defense, putting up 41 points to win the Super Bowl. Pure joy for Foles and Pederson. Joy is the passion or emotion excited by the acquisition of good.
Not only were they good, but they are now the best in the NFL. It is a gratifying feeling knowing that your hard work and faith resulted in becoming the best once and maybe it’s possible again. I’m sure all in the Eagles’ organization and fans are Fole(s) of joy as they celebrate this historic Super Bowl win!
Twenty years as an NFL coach and member of a Super Bowl Championship team provided a perspective on leadership that few people experience.
Over the course of his almost thirty-five-year football career, Bob Slowik taught leadership and motivation, while experiencing first-hand what it takes to face and conquer competition.
On his national speaking tour, he shares these lessons on mindset development and how to harness passion to achieve objectives. These messages not only resonate with athletes and other coaches; but with professionals in the business community who contend with challenges daily.
Founder of Coach Slow’s Land of Xs, Os & Beyond; developer of a boot camp-style web clinic, NFLLeadership.com; and author of Sixty Minutes to a Lifetime: Lessons I’ve Learned About Life and Football from My NFL Coaching Career; Coach Bob Slowik offers support and guidance for anyone with a game day to face.
Get to know Coach Slow on CoachSlow.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org for information on his lecture series and to book him to speak.