We all know that kids are influenced by professional athletes. Peyton Manning is one of those players who kids have looked up to for a long time. Manning's NFL jersey sales are still in the top ten. Last night the Super Bowl Champion Green Bay Packers beat the Indianapolis Colts 24-21. The Colts were playing without Peyton Manning, who is still recovering from neck surgery. Manning's May 2011 surgery was his second in the last couple years--said to be nothing major--and minimally invasive.
Manning has never missed a start in all his 13 seasons. He has led his team to one Super Bowl victory, two AFC Championships, and 11 playoffs. But fans are a little nervous. Without Manning the Colts are...well they are just not the Colts. In good and bad times though, Manning is someone you want your kids to look up, because he is good man. Like all sports heroes, he is not a saint, but he is a good role model for kids.
At Sporting Chance Press, we write and publish books that bring out the good in sports. I have been talking to various Christian churches and schools to promote our latest book, Sports and Faith: Stories of the Devoted and the Devout by Chicago Bears Senior Director Patrick McCaskey. Christian church and school leaders believe athletic training ought to be turning out kids who are not only stronger physically, but stronger in their faith. These leaders can rest a little easier when they see positive role models come from the ranks of professional athletes--and there are many of them.
Last night on TV, Peyton Manning said some great things when interviewed on the sideline.
1. Manning was asked about his injury and he talked about the great effort that his trainers and weight coaches were giving him. He lauded the folks who were giving him a hand.
2. He said he would play the first game if he could help his team. “I've never missed a game in my entire football career due to an injury since I was 13 years http://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gifold, and I sure don't want to start Week 1 of this season. But that's my goal,to be out there to play and, not just play, but to play competitively. I want to be out there to help my team win and if I'm able to do so, I'll be out there."
3. Manning was also asked by CBS sports reporter Sam Ryan, about his friend Tennessee women's basketball coach Pat Summitt, who was recently diagnosed with dementia. He responded that he had talked to her that day and that he was praying for her every day--"we all love her" and "we are pulling for her."
Here's the TV Interview.