It’s fourth and goal. Your team has the ball. They need a touchdown to secure a spot in the playoffs.
The quarterback comes to the line. His wide receivers stare back at him with anticipation. He looks over the defense and then at his favorite target. It’s all or nothing.
The defense shifts into position. The linebackers' eyes glare at the quarterback. Smoke exudes out their noses from the cold. Rain and sweat drip from their faces. The center grasps the ball. The quarterback takes position under center and calls for the ball. The center snaps the ball and the play is underway.
The quarterback drops back and looks to his first wide out but he is covered. He then looks to his second option but he too is covered. He looks for the tight end just in time to see the defender slip and fall. He rares back and lets it go. The tight end looks the ball into his hands and makes the game winning catch. The game is over.
Your team has won and secured the last spot in the playoffs. Everyone celebrates and the crowd goes wild.
In the concluding interview the quarterback talks about the miraculous drive and the last minute score. He thanks his teammates, his coach, his mother, and the ball boys and girls. The ball was nice and dry he explains, “If not for that, I would not have been able to make that throw.”
Who are the ball boys and girls you ask? The ball boys and girls are the unsung heroes of the NFL. They make sure the balls are clean and dry for play. They also make sure that the quarterbacks get the passing balls and the kickers get the kicking balls. If not for them your team might have missed out on that playoff spot.
You won’t see them doing a touchdown celebration or making that last minute catch, but they may be just as important. So the next time you’re watching your favorite team, make sure to thank the ball boys and girls for helping your team to the playoffs. For if not for them your favorite team would just be out there playing with their cold, wet, dirty balls.
*Note to self* (Some people may find the last line offensive) *Must Re-word*