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Power To Win
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For Shelton Quarles, Michael Boulware, and Renaldo Wynn, playing on the defensive side of the ball allows them to demonstrate the toughness of men of faith.
Although undrafted, Tampa Bay Buccaneers linebacker Shelton Quarles was an integral part of the team's victory in Super Bowl XXXVII. Nonetheless, he doesn't find lasting pleasure in bragging rights and trophies. "It's about eternity, and that's what I'm about," says Quarles.
Seattle safety Michael Boulware says his faith has sustained him whenever faced with difficulties that threaten his confidence. Michael says, "My favorite Scripture is 1 Corinthians 10:13. 'God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But, when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.'"
When the Washington Redskins signed Renaldo Wynn as a free agent in 2002, they got one of the most hard-working defensive ends in the NFL. "The most important thing with me is there aren't any surprises," he says. "You know what you're going to get. I pride myself on being accountable. My teammates depend on me, and I think you can take that back to Christian principles- being accountable to your brother."
First Name By Letter
Or By Name
TEBOW / MCCOY
As the current quarterbacks for the last two national championship teams, Colt McCoy and Tim Tebow have taken center stage in two of the most intensely scrutinized college football programs in America. Even as sophomores, this concept is not lost on McCoy and Tebow. They know they are being watched. They also know that with the immediate access they have to so many people, the opportunities to be a model and a spokesperson for Jesus Christ are preeminent. "In some places it's not the cool thing to do or the popular thing to be and God is not No. 1," says McCoy.
Tebow and McCoy were both hatched from close-knit, deeply Christian upbringings that saw them come to faith at an early age. Tim Tebow's fater, Bob Tebow, heads the Bob Tebow Evangelistic Association, which claims to be the conduit of close to 9 million people coming to faith in Christ in the last 8 years.
An NFL career is a goal for both of these young quarterbacks, but they are realistic enough to know there are no guarantees. McCoy looks forward to what God has in store. "God willing, I'd like to be in the NFL, but the important thing to do is His will."
Whether Shaun Alexander spends his Sunday morning wearing a football jersey on a field or a suit in a pew, he's the same guy. "Shaun is a Christian 24/7," says close friend and teammate Mack Strong. "He's a great example. It's a testimony to him, to God."
Alexander has made a lasting name for himself in the NFL. The accomplishments and praises he's received are only dreams for many. He's not surprised by his success; he's always set lofty goals and worked hard. Now he's a household name, but he says, "This is no time to say, 'Look at me.'" That's because, for Alexander, it's not just about football. "I play football to make a difference in people's lives."
The difference he wants to make is a difference for Christ. He has a heart for providing hope, especially for youth, and giving to others as unto the Lord. That's the purpose of his foundation and the community center he started with his brother. "You can't outgive God," he says.
The best day in his life? Being valedictorian of his graduating class? Setting NFL records? Becoming 2005 MVP? No. "It was the first time I led someone to Christ," says Alexander. What else would we expect?