Taking Flight

Jason Avant is used to dodging defenders as a receiver for the Philadelphia Eagles. But before he made it to the NFL he had to literally dodge bullets.

Twice he was cornered by rival gangs as a youngster growing up in Chicago. And the house he lived in was shot up numerous times. His mother left him as a toddler and his dad was in and out of prison. But the former Gangster Disciple is now a disciple of Christ and has developed into one of the Eagles’ steadiest receivers… Continue reading

NFL Closeup — David Akers

Each time David Akers was cut by his last two NFL teams, his departure oddly followed deep runs by his teams in the playoffs. It didn’t deter him from continuing to succeed, though. Now with his fourth NFL team, he is once again one of the NFL’s top kickers, this year playing for the Detroit Lions and their high-powered offense. Akers, who has made six Pro Bowls, played in two Super Bowls (2005 with Philadelphia and 2013 with San Francisco) and was named to the NFL’s All-Decade team for the 2000s, owns three NFL records. During the 2011 season, while playing for the San Francisco 49ers, he set single-season records for most points by a kicker (166) and field goals made (44). Last season, he tied the NFL record (held by three others) for the longest field goal when he kicked a 63-yarder at Lambeau Field against the Green Bay Read More

Bright Star In Big D

To win, Dallas Cowboy starting quarterback Tony Romo knows it takes a team. “As a quarterback, one of the most important things I’ve learned is that no one person can win a game by himself,” he recently said. He certainly relied on members of his own high-profile team during the Cowboys improbable march to the brink of the 2012 NFL playoffs, as week after week players were felled by injuries, on-field mistakes and other issues. Plus, the off-field death of a teammate and the absence of another fellow Cowboy player, who caused his teammate’s death through drunk driving, has put further stress on the team. Receiving far less attention, but vastly more important, is the number of spiritual teammates Romo has gained in his life as his faith in Jesus Christ has grown and his public witness has magnified over the last couple of years in one of the most Read More

Cutch in the Clutch

The calmness in Andrew McCutchen’s demeanor mirrors his play on the field. When he plays for the Pittsburgh Pirates, you see a smooth, graceful athlete who easily covers the space in centerfield, has a fluid swing at the plate and runs the bases extremely well. He’s that complete player the Pirates Need in the leadoff position and the reason they selected him 11th overall in the 2005 Major League Baseball draft out of Fort Meade (Fla.) High School… Continue reading

Humbled to Play

Eddie Perez was watching a television in a room off the Atlanta bullpen when he heard a knock on the door. The Braves coach knew it was the home run ball he had just seen burst off the bat of a hometown prodigy taking his first swing in the big leagues. “When we were watching in there, we got excited and we hear pop!” says Perez, who sensed more than the usual fan celebration at Turner Field. “Everybody was going crazy. It was like the birth of a new star… Continue reading

Another Angle — Hollow me, breathe through

My grandpa died a few weeks ago.

It was sad and unexpected, but I’m thankful I was able to see him in Indiana the week before he died. I live in North Carolina. It was my first time in Indiana in five months. Five months. I couldn’t believe I got to see him.

I think about stuff like this a lot, whether things are just a coincidence or if God has His hand in our lives, whether life is unfolding or if God is in control of all of it… Continue reading

August 2013 DigiMag now available!

We are happy to introduce to you our August 2013 DigiMag featuring Fresno State quarterback Derek Carr. This issue includes in-depth features on college football stars around the NCAA to prepare you for the upcoming season. Read about how University of South Carolina quarterback Dylan Thompson went from performing to living, Toledo defensive end Ben Pike chose the love of his life over football, and Derek Carr is continuing what his brother started at Fresno State. Managing editor Brett Honeycutt writes about Mike Vick, Riley Cooper and forgiveness in his column “Airing It Out;” staff writer Stephen Copeland writes about the recent passing of his grandfather and his interview with Toby Mac in his column “Another Angle;” and Bryce Johnson talks with Washington Redskins backup quarterback and former Michigan State star Kirk Cousins in his his column “Unpackin’ It.” Log in here to view the August DigiMag and our past digital issues from 2013 included in your subscription… Continue reading

Airing It Out — Michael Vick forgives; why can’t you?

If the statement below came from anyone else other than Michael Vick, we would glance over it, miss the potential lesson that we could learn (or be reminded of) and not think about how impactful it could be if we all did what Vick did. When asked about his teammate Riley Cooper, who used a racial slur while at a concert, Vick told reporters this: “As a team we understood because we all make mistakes in life and we all do and say things that maybe we do mean and maybe we don’t mean. But as a teammate, I forgave him… Continue reading

Who’s Al?

As Willie Robertson sits at his desk, signing what appears to be posters or lithographs, his oldest brother, Al Robertson, stands behind the desk, casually placing a new poster or lithograph in front of Willie each time Willie finishes signing.

It’s a perfect picture of who Al is, a behind-the-scenes (or behind-the-camera) guy who helps to keep things moving… Continue reading

Uncommon Challenge