Analysis fails. The hearts of competitors win.
Few safely predicted that the Jacksonville Jaguars would defeat the Indianapolis Colts on the afternoon of October 3, 2010. Yet such was the result. But those who predict are not those who play the game.
While the Jaguars suffered ugly losses for two weeks prior, a new team surfaced with the desire for victory against Manning. Momentum buzzed about the field and the Jaguars capitalized. If you look for for the source of this power that lead to such an amazing win, look no further than the ability and drive of the athletes clad in black-and-teal themselves. They fought. They executed. They won.
For perspective, consider that in a loss, running to the right repeatedly seems like elementary, predictable play calling. However in a win, running to the right repeatedly can be the key to victory. The only difference is the muscle and bone on the field and the performance delivered by those visceral components at the moments that count.
The Colts fought and tried to derail a heroic performance by the Jaguars’ combatants. But something like this happened. Ebbs and flows were abundant. Third downs were critical. Incomplete passes were gold in your favor, and curses when against you. Time was critical. Distance was everything. And no coach or coordinator could magic their way into the equation.
The battle occurred on the field. Competition among athletes stole the stage. And the leg of an athlete ensured victory for a team no analyst considered capable of winning. So, predict all you want. Dissect the coaching, the play calling, and the chemistry. But such efforts will produce no results. The game is played by athletes who wear the uniform as a means to provide for their instant family and beyond. For the players, the game is life. For fans, the game just makes life better. Especially when something like this happens.
- Arthur Hardie