Quarterback Resilience

One day a farmer's donkey fell down into a well. The animal cried piteously for hours as the farmer tried to figure out a way to get him out. Finally he decided it was probably impossible and the animal was old and the well was dry anyway, so it just wasn't worth it to try and retrieve the donkey. So the farmer asked his neighbors to come over and help him cover up the well. They all grabbed shovels and began to shovel dirt into the well.

At first, when the donkey realized what was happening he cried horribly. Then, to everyone's amazement, he quieted down and let out some happy brays. A few shovel loads later, the farmer looked down the well to see what was happening and was astonished at what he saw. With every shovel of dirt that hit his back, the donkey was shaking it off and taking a step up. (Shifting)

As the farmer's neighbors continued to shovel dirt on top of the animal, he continued to shake it off and take a step up. Pretty soon, to everyone's amazement, the donkey stepped up over the edge of the well and trotted off!

The moral is one that every quarterback can relate to. The game is going to shovel dirt on you at some point. The trick to getting out of the well is to shake it off and take a step up. Every adversity can be turned into a stepping-stone for success. The way to get out of the deepest well is by never giving up, but also by shaking yourself off and taking a step up.

What happens to you isn't nearly as important as how you react to it. Elite 11 Head Coach Trent Dilfer calls this P.A.C.E. – Plays After Critical Errors. The contemporary term and definition for this is called Bounce Back Ability – the ability to recover after a setback. A more simple word for this is resilience.

For a quarterback, resiliency and the ability to bounce back from critical errors is one of the most important components to success at the position. A successful quarterback doesn’t dwell on failures. He accepts and acknowledges the situation, learns from the mistake, and moves forward.