Too many times we see it, football players who are too nice on the field. Football isn’t a “nice” sport. It requires aggressiveness, a disregard for your opponent’s feelings and a killer instinct. But how do you develop it if you’re a nice guy?

Let’s look at the example of 9x Pro-Bowler, former Philadelphia Eagle (and Denver Bronco) DB- Brian Dawkins. Dawkins was one of the nicest guys you could meet off the football field but someone to be feared by any offensive player who stood in his path on the field. Let’s hear what a former coach and some teammates said about him off the field:

“the most mild-mannered guy you’ve ever been around” – Andy Reid

“mild-mannered, real quiet Christian man” – David Akers

“meek, mild, well mannered… he’s like a teddy bear” – Troy Vincent

How could someone like this be a menace to opposing players? How could someone with these attitudes succeed in a sport like football? By staying in the locker room and letting his alter-ego take the field for him.

The transformation for Dawkins from meek and mild, to animalistic began in the locker room before games, where he had two lockers- one for Brian Dawkins and one for “Weapon X”. Here the former Eagle would paint his Breath Right strip silver and green and oil his muscles up as he began to get into character. He also wore a tinted visor so you couldn’t see his eyes. This was all part of his warrior gear. Once geared up, Dawkins was ready to leave himself in the locker room. Out on the field came “Weapon X”. Dawkins flipped the switch as he came out of the tunnel – jumping around, crawling and making what sounded like sub-human noises.

Let’s breakdown the other elements of an alter-ego continuing to use Dawkins as the example:   

  •         Attitudes on the field: 

o   “Give everything you got knowing that it could hurt” “

o   Play so that it sends a message to your teammates and the opposing team

o   Always looking for big hits and to turn the tide of the game

o   Fire up teammates to prepare them for battle

o   Let everything go on the field and “acts a fool”

  •         Battle Cries:

o   Talking to the football

o   “Speaking in tongues”

o   Making the noises of a wolverine

Without his alter-ego, Brian Dawkins may have never reached his potential as a football player. He was one of the nicest guys you could know, but he found an effective way of keeping that part of himself off the field.

Are you a player who hesitates on the football field? Are you sometimes too nice to your opponents? Do you ever feel sorry for them? If so, you may want to consider developing an alter-ego to leave your nice side where it belongs – anywhere but the football field!

If you need help, Football Mindset can help you to develop an alter-ego on the field with our Aggressiveness series of mindset lessons. Reach out today to setup a free trial session and take the first step in becoming a “weapon” on the football field!