The story of the Philadelphia Eagles’ journey to become Super Bowl LII champions in 2017 was already one for the ages. On a just-released episode of his new “Mission of Truth” podcast with former teammate Chris Maragos, quarterback Nick Foles shared previously untold stories of his own wild ride to football’s biggest stage.
Foles, who as a backup to Carson Wentz for most of the year memorably took home Super Bowl MVP honors, walked listeners through his feelings and experiences leading to the championship matchup with the New England Patriots.
Among one of Foles’s most fascinating stories was that the “Philly Special,” one of the most iconic plays in Super Bowl history, almost happened in the NFC Championship Game against the Minnesota Vikings. Earlier in the game, Foles absorbed a blow to the rib cage and fought through pain the rest of the night. Foles said he advised his coach, Doug Pederson, not to run the trick play because he didn’t think he could lift his arms high enough at the time to make the catch.
“It almost happened,” Foles said, “and it was one of those moments where, honestly, it probably does happen if my ribs aren’t killing me.”
— Philadelphia Eagles (@Eagles) April 12, 2018
Foles also revealed in the podcast that he had been dealing with a lingering elbow injury throughout the season and needed extensive treatment to be able to take the field. In the bye week before the Super Bowl, as he grew weary from the additional obligations, it began to take its toll on him emotionally. Foles realized he wasn’t spending quality time with his Lord and Savior.
“I wasn’t allowing myself enough rest,” Foles said on the podcast. “I wasn’t spending enough time speaking to my Heavenly Father. I wasn’t spending time journaling. I wasn’t spending enough time in the Word. I was spending time, but it wasn’t purposeful time. It wasn’t real time.”
Foles explained that he turned to God to stave off thoughts of self-doubt.
“‘God, why me?! I’m not equipped. I’m not the most talented. I’m not the greatest. I’m not the smartest. Why am I allowed to be in this situation?'” he said, adding, “There’s a way to overcome that. It’s by leaning on God’s Word and trusting in the Lord that He had planned this and I had to trust Him and I had to glorify Him no matter what.”
Foles said he continued pray throughout the week leading up to the big game. He found comfort in prayer and in God’s Word, especially Matthew 6:34.
“Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” — Matthew 6:34
Really excited for you to hear our new episode coming out this Friday 5/29 on my Super Bowl experience with the @Eagles. We dive deeper than we ever have before and share stories that have never been told. @MofT_Podcast @ChrisMaragos pic.twitter.com/TavIOawHDX
— Nick Foles (@NickFoles) May 27, 2020
Foles also shared his thoughts about the Super Bowl between the white lines and the pure joy he felt in the moments after the clock hit zero.
“One of the greatest moments was looking at the Lombardi Trophy, excited about hoisting it because of the representation of what it meant to the city and what it meant to our team, but realizing that I didn’t need that to be fulfilled,” Foles said. “That comes from Jesus Christ. God allowed me to have that moment for His glory, not my own.”
Foles’ Super Bowl experience was capped off with a trip to Disney World and a massive victory parade through the streets of Philadelphia.
The 31-year-old will start a new chapter in his NFL journey with the Bears in 2020 (he was traded from Jacksonville to Chicago in March). Still, he will cherish the highs and lows, the joys and pains, of one of the most memorable experiences of his life. He knows the steadfast love of God has always been with him, regardless of his circumstances.
“It wasn’t for the purpose of winning the Super Bowl, it was for the purpose of glorifying Him,” he said, adding, “It was in these moments I can tell you God continued to restore me by resting and leaning on Him for His glory, not my own.”
Listen here to the full “Mission of Truth” episode released Friday morning.
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