Growing up a life long Cleveland Browns fan, I have always respected the old school NFL teams. The ones that paved the way for what we know today as the greatest professional organization in sports always come to my mind.
Watching old film of players like Jim Brown, Walter Payton, Earl Campbell, and Gale Sayers takes me back to times where men played for the love of the game and did not care to see who could get the most Twitter followers. Guys like Ronnie Lott literally dismembered their own hands to avoid missing plays and to stay on the field in the heat of battle. One of the players that I feel carries this same “gladiator type” approach is the sure bet Hall of Fame running back for the Minnesota Vikings, Adrian Peterson.
A lot could be said about the Palestine, TX native. Whether it be from his humble beginnings, the death of one brother and a half brother, or numerous injuries, Peterson or “All Day” has battled adversity throughout his entire life. The best part about him is his ability to consistently rise to the occasion and finish what he starts.
Some teams were skeptical about taking a running back that high in the first round, especially with a history of knee problems. Nevertheless, Minnesota has never looked back and embraced him as their favorite son
When I get old and I am telling my grandchildren football stories on cold Sunday afternoons, Peterson will be one of the players that always comes to mind. Guys that play through sickness, play when they’re not happy about contracts, play their hearts out when their team is in last place, and that play for the fans who love them so dearly.
Peterson not only exemplifies what it means to wear an NFL uniform, but also shows his passion helping off the field. The “All Day Foundation” is Peterson’s legacy to give back with the same drive, heart, determination, and dedication he demonstrates on the football field.
When I hear these types of stories of players giving back, it keeps the fire burning inside that I have for the love of the game. And, as players come and go, I hope the torch is passed to future generations to give back and continue the mentality of “Never give up and never surrender”.
You may never know who is watching.
Ryan Ruiz – rantsports.com Writer
(with credits to D.A.S)
Please Follow Me on Twitter @ryanpruiz24