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2005 Super Bowl Jacksonville

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Faith-filled players, crowd of 3,000 gather for annual gospel celebration

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (BP)--From the outside, the look was very much of a high-profile Super Bowl XXXIX event. Police were directing traffic as lines of people entered the massive building for a celebrity-fueled evening with a slate of NFL stars.

Steelers QB Roethlisberger aims career toward ‘PFJ’

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Ben Roethlisberger
Photo courtesy of the Pittsburgh Steelers
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (BP) - Pittsburgh Steelers rookie quarterback Ben Roethlisberger enjoyed a magical season in 2004, going from third-string signal caller to NFL Rookie of the Year by leading his team to 15 straight wins and within one victory of the Super Bowl.
      But what wasn't as well known is how the young player used his newfound pro football platform to share his faith in Jesus Christ.
      "Sometimes you're handed an opportunity to speak that you don't even know you're going to have. Only God could have brought me from third team as a rookie to a starter and Rookie of the Year," he said.

Pat Summerall honored; says faith makes it ‘very happy day’

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Honoring Summerall
Legendary sportcaster Pat Summerall, a member of First Baptist Church, Euless, Texas, shares a minute with Joe Ford, vice chairman of the Augusta National Golf Club, at a Feb. 4 luncheon honoring Summerall in Jacksonville, Fla. Photo photo by Joni B. Hannigan/Florida Baptist Witness
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (BP)--Jacksonville native Pat Summerall was honored at a Legends for Charity Luncheon on the grounds of the Super Bowl XXIX stadium, but after the two-hour tribute Feb. 4, Summerall used his response to talk about the true legendary figure in his life.
“I was just sitting here thinking during this about relationships and how important relationships are. Without relationships you would be alone,” he said to the crowd of 800. “And I feel better about my relationship with God and more confident about it than I ever have.”
The longtime voice of the NFL, starting with CBS and continuing with Fox for nearly 50 years, has witnessed many memorable on-field events. But not as well known is the transformation in Summerall's own life over the last decade.

Emmitt Smith ready to get back in church

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (BP)--When the NFL’s all-time leading rusher Emmitt Smith announced his retirement during Super Bowl week before a packed crowd of journalists, the former Dallas Cowboy great had three full sheets of people to thank for helping in his Hall of Fame-bound career.

Reggie White honored during pre-Super Bowl breakfast

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (BP)--Just over 25 hours before Super Bowl XXXIX got underway, players from around the NFL gathered for an awards program -- and to remember the late Reggie White -- at the 18th annual Athletes in Action Super Bowl breakfast.

Eagles coach preps for game time with 23rd Psalm reminder

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (BP)--Before he steps on the field Sunday afternoon for what will be the biggest game of his coaching career, Philadelphia Eagles running backs coach Ted Williams will have completed all of his pre-game preparations.

Patriots’ strength coach aims to ‘stay strong for God’

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (BP)--Markus Paul works throughout the year to make the New England Patriots a bigger, stronger and tougher team in his role as a strength and conditioning coach.

Christian players on Pats grounded by prayer, Bible study

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Patriot’s priority
Whether it’s game day or any other day, Patriots cornerback Rodney Harrison says, “I have to start my morning out right with devotion, prayer and reading God’s Word... I pray about becoming a better dad, a better husband, a better person in Christ.” Photo by Joni B. Hannigan/Florida Baptist Witness
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (BP)--When hard-hitting New England Patriots cornerback Rodney Harrison gets ready to start another day during the football season, he usually has a full schedule.
      The 11-year all-star usually has a packed schedule of team meetings, practice, endorsement deals and sessions with agents, reporters and sponsors.
      But there is one thing Harrison, who is looking to collect his second Super Bowl title in as many years with the Patriots, won’t start the day without -- his daily time of worship, prayer, meditation and Bible study.
      “Without my faith in the Lord, there is no way I would be here,” he said during the media day at Alltel Stadium in Jacksonville, Fla., as a prelude to Super Bowl XXXIX against the Philadelphia Eagles.

Christians on the Eagles resolved ‘to stay humble’ in God’s Word

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (BP)--Growing up in Georgia, the son of a Southern Baptist evangelist, Roderick Hood divided his time between the church and the football fields.

He’s gone from 3-13 to Super Bowl as Eagles’ chaplain

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (BP)--When the Philadelphia Eagles finally reached this year’s Super Bowl after three agonizing championship game defeats, there was plenty of talk about how quarterback Donovan McNabb had finally matured to lead his team to victory.