By Steve Jordan to my son, Cameron
Each Father’s Day, I am reminded once again how important our children are to us. Really, this is evident every day of the year, but Father’s Day is a special time to spend the day with our family and enjoy each other’s company.
All the fathers out there know that it can be a tough job to be a dad. But I see it as a “labor of love.” There’s no book to follow on how exactly to be a good dad. Fathers can do so much to make an impact.
In your football-playing career, our family has seen it all. Your first high school game. The signing of your college acceptance letter. Individual honors and team success at the University of California-Berkeley. The blessing of being drafted in the first round by the New Orleans Saints. The ecstasy of victory. The agony of defeat. Pressure-packed situations in front of college, and hopefully soon, NFL-crazed fans in major cities. Tremendous highs, disappointing lows, and everything in between.
Most people have no idea of the hard work and sacrifices that players make to get to this level. As a father, knowing you as I do, I really want football to be played this season. I take great pride in supporting you as you navigate the ins and outs of the NFL like I once did as a player. On and off the field, I’ll always be in your corner, son.
For us, family and football have been intertwined for decades now. Some of your teammates and coaches have been like family to us. Like all fathers, I share in your accomplishments and your happiness becomes my happiness. I worked hard to become a Pro Bowl player in the NFL, and I have taught you the value of a strong work ethic and faith in God. Talent alone will only get you so far.
When you become a parent, your child’s life can take over your own life. You try to do whatever is in your power to put your wife and children first, while your life gets put on the backburner. Being a dad is one of the most important jobs any man can have.
When I talk to new NFL fathers, I tell them not to underestimate the role we play in our sons’ lives. In a loving and supportive way, I’ve tried to be your biggest advocate, and yet your most honest critic, and I think you appreciate that.
I thank God constantly for giving me the opportunity to coach our kids, and I attend almost every game, because I know your next game is not promised. As I see other young adults realize the pursuit of their dreams of college and careers, I pray that your pursuit of playing on Sundays will be achieved. All fathers of NFL players want to be able to watch their sons play football. As I reflect on this Father’s Day, a great gift for me would be cheering for you doing what you love to do. We are in this together!