led Super Bowl MVP Nick Foles
back to Philadelphia
Super Bowl MVP quarterback Nick Foles' unexpected
path back to the Philadelphia Eagles and Super Bowl LII
began with taking a knee. Well, two actually.
Foles, a devout Christian, has a new book out called "Believe It: My Journey of Success, Failure, and Overcoming
the Odds" through Tyndale House Publishers. It
talks about his how his faith played a role in his road to
the Super Bowl.
The QB, whose life challenges go far
beyond failing as a starting quarterback, was ready to
retire 12 months ago. Pulled to responsibilities as a father
and husband, frustrated by falling flat with the Los Angeles
Rams and called to something he couldn't explain, Foles said
the door back to the Eagles was not opened by team president
Howie Roseman's two-year, $11 million offer.
Rather, Foles went to the playbook he trusts, The Bible, and
shut himself inside a prayer closet - a space in his home
where he hits his knees and faith takes over.
"The reason I decided to come back is I loved the game of
football since I was a kid, I loved playing sports, loved
being part of a team. I knew as a person the more growth I
would have, the more opportunity to glorify God and trust in
Him was to go back and play football because of everything I
had encountered," said Foles.
"It took a lot more faith to go back and play than if it
would have gone the other direction. Either way, I would've
been fine. I know I would've trusted in God."
Foles wrote Believe It with
author Joshua Cooley -- Cooley is releasing a book
titled "The Biggest Win, and it looks into the
religion and faith of Foles, Carson Wentz, Trey Burton,
Zach Ertz, Jordan Hicks and Chris Maragos -- and
former Eagles offensive coordinator Frank Reich wrote
"It was a battle," Foles said about
his career. "It's not easy, but I was able to come out of it
learning a lot and overcoming some fears that I had, and I
think we all have fears that we face and to overcome and
attack them, that allows us to grow. That's what I talk
about in the book. I try to share with young players, I try
to share with kids, I try to share the tough times in my
Foles entered the league with the Eagles in 2012 out of
Arizona and during his six-year career went from backup to
starter, was traded to the St. Louis Rams for Sam
Bradford, then later released before signing with the
Kansas City Chiefs. In between he married his wife
Tori, who was a volleyball player when they became a couple.
were married during a time Tori was undergoing tests at Mayo
Clinic in Rochester, Minn., which is around the time Foles
felt his focus and priorities shift from football.
In 2013, Tori was diagnosed with Postural Orthostatic
Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS) and later diagnosed with Lyme
disease. Her heart rate could raise 30 beats per minute just
from sitting and standing.
"We never had a wedding ceremony. We never had a honeymoon. Just
the journey we've gone on and gone through this and just to see
her strength and to see her determination and to see her health
continue to improve," Foles said. "And she still deals with it.
It's amazing. It gives me strength because I know she deals with
it every single day."
Foles said one bible verse particularly jolted him toward
returning to the game after not picking up a football for
That verse, 2 Corinthians 12:9, includes the words, "My grace is
sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness."
In his second stint with the Eagles, Foles discovered quickly
that faith was a common bond in the quarterback room. Offensive
coordinator Frank Reich, who played in four Super Bowls
as Jim Kelly's backup with the Buffalo Bills and coached
in the 2009 Super Bowl as a member of the Indianapolis Colts'
staff, went to seminary after his playing career ended.
Carson Wentz, the Eagles' starter this season until he
tore multiple knee ligaments in December, is deeply rooted in
Christian faith. His foundation, Audience of One, speaks
directly to that idea.
But, it goes deeper than that. After the game, running back
Ajai talked about the many Christians on the Eagles team.
"The coach told me about how faithful this team is and about so many
Christians on this team" he said on NBC's postgame show. "I've
never actually seen a team so faith oriented and it showed,
especially during adversity and tough times and challenges. That
faith and brotherhood that has formed because of those great
Christian values that we have on this team. I'm so blessed to be
"I can only give the praise to my Lord and savior Jesus Christ for giving
me this opportunity," said head coach Doug Pederson after
Tight end Zach Ertz, who caught the game winning touchdown
said "glory to God, first and foremost. We wouldn't be here
And, now, Foles and the Eagles have the team's first ever Super
By Best Selling Author, Randy Alcorn
the many fine young men I've gotten to know through the ministry of
Pro Athletes Outreach (PAO), quarterback Nick Foles stands
out as one of those most serious in his Christian faith.
Recently Nick's new book Believe It: My Journey of Success, Failure
and Overcoming the Odds, was released. It debuted at #5 on the
New York Times Best Sellers list! And its currently #20 on the
Christian Booksellers' Top 50 list.
Josh Cooley's able help, Nick has told his story in a unique and
memorable way that can be enjoyed by avid football fans and not so
avid ones. I loved this book, which has excellent stories, honesty,
and life lessons from a brother in Christ who is the real deal.
I consider Nick a good friend, and I respect but do not idolize him. Part
of what I love is that he has learned great life lessons not just
from his success, but his failures. He talks about both in his book.
In addition to our exchanging a lot of texts, I've spent time with Nick
in three locations, including our home. I've talked and prayed with
him and each time I've been struck with his sincerity, humility and
genuine desire to make a difference in people's lives for the glory
of God. (After retiring from the NFL he wants to become a youth
pastor - Super Bowl MVP looks pretty good on a youth pastor's
The book is well written and authentically portrays Nick's personal
priorities and heart for others, especially young people. I've seen
how he's interacted with my own grandsons. He has spoken into their
lives on a spiritual basis, and I believe through this book he will
speak powerfully into hundreds of thousands of other lives. One of
the things I love in the book is how he honors his wife Tori and
deals with her health struggles. They are both honest and open and
don't airbrush life's challenges.
Here's more about the book:
Get ready to defy the odds when everyone's counting you out.
When the Philadelphia Eagles' starting quarterback went down with a torn
ACL in week 14 of the 2017 NFL season, many fans - and commentators
- assumed the Eagles' season was over.
Instead, Nick Foles came off the bench and, against all odds, led the
Eagles to their first Super Bowl victory in history.
How did Nick get it done - winning MVP honors, silencing the critics, and
shocking the world? How did the man who was on the verge of retiring
just two seasons earlier stay optimistic and rally the team to an
astounding win? How did he stay ready despite numerous trades and
discouraging injuries, able to step up in the moment and perform at
the top of his game?
"Believe It" offers a behind-the-scenes look at Nick's unlikely path to
the Super Bowl, the obstacles that threatened to hold him back, his
rediscovery of his love for the game, and the faith that grounded
him through it all. Learn from the way Nick handled the trials and
tribulations that made him into the man he is today - and discover a
path to your own success.
an excerpt from Nick's book:
Everything in my life changed in the span of sixty seconds.
It was March 10, 2015, the official start of the NFL calendar. The 2014
season was already a distant memory, which was fine by me. After
enjoying a record-setting second season with the Eagles in 2013, I
had regressed some during my third season. My accuracy wasn't as
sharp, and my overall statistics were nowhere near my earlier Pro
Bowl level. To make matters worse, I had suffered a broken
collarbone in a week eight win over Houston and missed the rest of
Nevertheless, I was filled with excitement heading into 2015. Despite my
statistical drop-off the year before, I had led the Eagles to a 6-2
record, and we had a solid core of players returning to a 10-6 team
that had barely missed the playoffs. My collarbone had fully healed,
and I was feeling better than ever. Hope abounded.
That morning I headed to Equinox, my off-season gym in Irvine,
California, to play some basketball and work out. I had been a
decent high school basketball player in Texas, and it was always
nice to dust off those skills between NFL campaigns. I felt fluid
and sharp as I played a little pickup and a couple of rounds of
H-O-R-S-E with some gym buddies.
Steph Curry's roster spot was by no means in jeopardy, but I was
nailing some pretty crazy half-court shots. Everything was clicking.
Eventually, the weight room beckoned. The earbuds went in, the
country music went on, and the volume went up. (You can take the
country boy out of Texas, but you can't take Texas out of the
I was in the middle of a set of leg presses when my phone rang. Typically
I don't answer my phone during workouts, but the caller ID read
Chip Kelly, and when your head coach calls, you answer.
The regular season had been over for ten weeks. My last conversation with
Chip had been our exit meeting in early January before I left for
the off-season. I assumed he wanted to check on my collarbone and my
overall progress - maybe even discuss his roster-building plans.
Boy, was I wrong. The call started out benignly enough. "Hey, Chip. What's up?"
"Hey, Nick. How are you feeling?"
"I feel great. I'm in the best shape of my life." And I meant it.
"I'm really excited about this season and this team."
Chip told me he was happy to hear that, and then he talked a little
about how the team was building for the future. Then, out of
nowhere, came the fifty-foot swell.
"Nick, I'm actually calling to tell you that we've traded you to the St.
Louis Rams for Sam Bradford. I wanted to be the one to let
you know. Thanks for all you've done for this organization and for
me personally. I wish you the best of luck."
Chip's tone was steady and measured - almost Belichickian - a stark
contrast to what I was feeling. I stood up, faced the window, and
blinked, unable to find words.
I'd loved playing in Chip's rapid-fire offense. We had so many dynamic
weapons on the team - Riley Cooper, Zach Ertz, Jeremy Maclin,
Jordan Matthews, LeSean McCoy, Darren Sproles. Besides, my wife,
Tori, and I had quickly grown to love the city of Philadelphia, and
we were excited about diving into community work there. We wanted to
plant deep roots.
Now those dreams were being dashed in a matter of seconds. I was
flabbergasted. What was I supposed to say? Like Barry Sanders
in the open field, eloquent words escaped me.
"Well," I stammered, "thanks for the call. Obviously, I want to be in
Philly, but I understand.
Did I? With all the graciousness I could muster, I said, "I'm truly grateful for
my time with the Eagles. I wish you the best."
Chip informed me that I'd be getting a call from Rams head coach Jeff
Fisher soon. Then we hung up.
I looked at my phone. The call had lasted exactly one minute. I stood
frozen at the leg-press station, my body numb. Off-season trades are
commonplace in the NFL, but you never think it's going to be you.
What just happened? One moment I was planning my future as the franchise quarterback for the
Eagles. The next, my world was like a merry-go-round flying off its
Sure enough, Jeff Fisher called a minute later to welcome me to the Rams.
I tried to sound enthusiastic, but honestly I was faking it.
After we wrapped up the call, I ditched the rest of my workout. Whatever
motivation I'd had that morning had evaporated. I called home and
broke the news to Tori; then I called my dad.
The next day I flew to St. Louis to meet my new coaches, undergo a
physical, and hold a press conference.
For the first time, I started to grasp a harsh reality: the NFL was a
business, and I was an expendable commodity.
Everything I'd been working toward in Philadelphia had suddenly been
None of this was part of my plan.
Read a longer excerpt
here. Also, make sure you check out
this interview with Nick on Sports
Spectrum, one of my favorite sites. Nick shares his
reason for writing a book, how close he was to retiring from the
NFL, cultivating a culture of faith in the locker room, going from
MVP to backup, and why he doesn't want to be called a "starting
here's an article about Nick's wife Tori, and her
struggle with POTS, a little-known disorder.
Eternal Perspective Ministries ~