It takes a lot of discipline and belief to stay mentally and physically ready to play professional sports after you've been waived, released, or cut. You have to prepare as if someone is going to call you at a moments notice even if the phone doesn't ring for days, weeks, or months. Friends and family try to keep you positive, but in the back of your mind you wonder if you'll even get a second chance. You watch to see who's under performing. You watch to see who gets suspended. You watch to see who gets hurt.
Former all pro kicker Josh Brown found himself in this position just a few weeks ago when the Cincinnati Bengals came calling after starter Mike Nugent went down with an injury. Brown was thrust into service with a team in the playoff hunt and the pressure was squarely on his shoulders. I'm sure Josh did his Eminem 8 Mile impersonation before the Dallas game (palms were sweaty, vomit on sweater mom's spaghetti), but he came through like a champ making 4 field goals giving the Bengals a chance to win. If he was off wallowing in self pity somewhere or letting his body go to hell he would have missed a golden opportunity to resurrect his career. Kudos to Josh for losing himself in the moment.
Don't get me wrong, the task at hand was probably easier for Josh Brown that other athletes in a similar position. It's not like you were asking him to guard Kobe Bryant or cover Megatron or learn a complex offense in 6 days time. Kickers don't have to lift a ton of weights, do wind sprints, or keep their body weight down. They just have to keep their dominant leg in shape, concentrate, and control their fear. You still gotta do it though and Josh didn't disappoint. That doesn't mean he can't turn into SHANKAPOTIMUS at some point during the season, but for now it looks like he can still perform at a high level in the NFL. The moral of the story is MAKE THE MOST OF YOUR SECOND CHANCE!