Kurt Warner was left for dead after taking the St. Louis Rams to the Super Bowl at the age of 30. That happened way back in 2001. Now, 8 years later, there is no way anyone would have predicted that he would find himself back in the big game. No one, that is, except himself. Considering he only played in 7 games in 2002, in only 2 games in 2003, and was replaced by rookie Eli Manning in 2004 in New York. So where is a dried-up, has-been to go when a career goes dry? How about the desert heat? So that is where he went…Arizona. In 2005, Warner threw the ball a lot because…well…there wasn’t anything else his team COULD do. And he got hit a lot. And that’s not good when you are 34 and apparently biding your time to retirement.
And then when the Cards drafted Matt Leinart, it looked like he would be kept around to train the rookie QB of the Cardinals’ future. But, in an interesting twist of fate, Warner didn’t cave to the call of retirement. Instead, he fought for a starting position and got it. His experience & poise kept him in the top spot and the capable hands of 2 very good wide receivers also helped. So now, Warner is back in the drivers seat, facing off against another one of those rookie upstarts in Ben Roethlisberger.
Can Warner do it one more time? Can he stave off all of the “old age” talk and lead his Cardinals to the first Super Bowl win in franchise history? I will be rooting for him! Warner has shown, time and time again, that he is a class act. Put all of his amazing stats aside, he is a great man doing great things, not only on the field, but off it. A born again Christian, Warner never passes up a chance to give God a shout out in interviews and has done plenty of charity work in his lifetime. He and his wife have 7 kids (Warner adopted his wife’s 2 children from a previous relationship) and he continues to be a strong spokesperson for husbands and fathers everywhere.
Kurt Warner is a class act in a league that is in dire need of “class acts”. With so many negative stories coming out of the NFL, Warner is a breath of fresh air. Throw in stats that are equivalent to some of the other great quarterbacks in NFL history, I am going out on a limb here and saying with his win in the NFC Championship game this year versus the Eagles, Warner has locked up a place in the NFL Hall of Fame. But…that is many years down the road. Right now, he has a chance to become a legend. And THAT is something far better than a head in a dark room.