In my 49 years of walking God’s green earth, I have spent 43 of those years watching, dreaming, participating in, and now broadcasting the NFL draft; but this 2015 NFL draft touched me in a special way. When Commissioner Roger Goodell approach the podium and announced, “…with the 26th pick of the first round, the Baltimore Ravens select Breshad Perriman.” My heart jumped for such joy that it almost propelled right out of my chest!
You see, back in 1984, when I was selected to play in the state of Florida’s high school all-star football game; I met a kid named Brett Perriman, Breshad Perriman’s father. We became great friends, we played wide receiver together, we attended the U together, we lived in an off campus apartment together, we won championships together we met our wives together, we got drafted in the NFL together, we even bought our first nice car, BMWs, together. I share all that just to say I love Brett Perriman like a brother.
My brother Brett and I have had many heart-to-heart conversations about our families and kids. We have had discussions about the Baltimore Ravens first round draft choice, Breshad Perriman, and they were not always good. Some of our talks even made us questions our abilities as fathers. When Brett and I were sharing the day before the 2015 NFL draft; he strengthened me with these words, “You know, as I stand here today, I can tell you it wasn’t easy, but it is worth it.” Today I want to use my brother’s words to encourage any father that is reading this. I know it’s not easy, but it’s worth it. So hang in there.
As I sat on draft desk my mind went to the upcoming season. I said, “Please, please God let me be there on Thursday night football when the Ravens play the Steelers.” The announcer will say, “Baltimore’s quarterback Joe Flacco drops back to pass and he lunges a pass down the right side line, Breshad Perriman catches it and sprints 60 yards for the game winning touchdown.” The crowd will go crazy, his teammates will be jumping all over him celebrating and he will turn to the camera and do what we traditionally do in the NFL; he will shout, “Hey Mom!” (Moms deserve that moment.)
That’s why I am taking this moment to shout, “Hey Dad………….. Great Job!”
I am impressed with you Mr. Irvin. You are an accomplished soldier of faith. You never gave up or in. You have done some fabulous things off the field i.e. clothing, haberdashery, academy, acting, sportscaster. You have never been too big for reaching out to help others of all ethnicities. My prayer is that you live a long life and bless everyone with your life experiences. Thank you and thank God. God Bless You.
Michael as a very passionate Philadelphia Eagles fan since they played at Franklin Field I would just like to apologize for a game many years ago at the Vet where you were seriously hurt and had to be taking off the field on a stretcher only to be cheered by the Eagles fans. That was extremely upsetting to me as a fan cheering for an injured player. You were a class player and a great member of Inside the NFL.