Earlier today, Peter King's MMQB published an interview with the Rams new Franchise QB. It's an interesting piece that takes a look at things from his point of view.
Throughout the interview, his character and sincerity consistently frequently show (yes there is some homer-ism there). Handling adversity is a common theme as well.
What was the second half of last season like for you, after breaking your collarbone and having to watch from the sideline?
It was emotional. When I got injured, we were winning some tough football games. We were atop the NFC East, and we were really fighting down to the wire and winning some late ones in the fourth quarter, and then I went down. You really want to be out there with your teammates helping them win, but you take on a different role. My job was, I want to be the best person that I can be, the best leader I can be from this position. That came from supporting Mark Sanchez any way I could, to being at all the meetings and practices, and doing whatever rehab I could. I would get there early in the morning, before everything, and train, and then work out during practice in the periods the offense wasn’t going. I wanted to get back, and I wanted to get healthy. My goal was to be back before the season ended last year, and to be able to play the last couple games of the season. But it didn’t turn out that way.
Now that sounds like someone who I want leading my football team. Even when injured, he was doing everything he could to support his teammates, most notably his replacement. That's what a leader does. If he acts that way when he's injured, I'm excited to see how that translates to the field on Sundays.
In 2013 you threw 27 touchdowns and two interceptions. Before you got hurt last season, you threw 13 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. Which of those quarterbacks is the real Nick Foles?
Both of them. Those are all me. I don’t want to turn the ball over. I want to throw touchdowns, and I want to help our offense move the ball and get the ball in the end zone. Every single rep I have ever taken, that’s always been the guy who I want to be. I am not going to sit here and tell you that 2013 is exactly [who I am as a quarterback]. I’ve grown since both of those years. I’m a better player, a better person, a better athlete. I know everybody is going to analyze [the different stat lines] until the cows come home. But I’m not worried about that. I just want to work here and be successful here.
A vastly under-rated trait for any football player - or any person for that matter - is to recognize their deficiencies and improve upon them. He realized that he turned the ball over too much in 2014 and needs to correct that. The most meaningful takeaway here is the last 2 sentences. He doesn't care about stats. He just wants to be successful.
The year after your breakout season can sometimes be more challenging, because opponents know more about you and have more film on you. What lessons did you learn during the 2014 season?
Just how important it is to stick together through adversity. We faced some adverse situations through the first eight games. There were three, four games when we were down 10 points, and we came back and won. That was just a testament to the culture we had built. Guys believed in each other, and they believed in me as a quarterback to be able to get the ball down the field and score some touchdowns. It’s easy when you are winning games and blowing teams out. It’s when you have to fight through the fourth quarter that you really build that character. I felt like we were growing. Me as a player, I grew a lot through adverse times—throwing interceptions, having to come back on the field and throw it again. You learn a lot through that.
He seems to have that 'gunslinger' mentality that Bradford lacked. He has the ability to inspire faith among his team-mates which tells me he is respected in the locker room and can command a huddle very well.
I'm glad that he can handle adversity, because as it stands he's going to face some behind our current group of OL.