For months, we have been inundated with negativity about the NFL. Posturing, harsh words, and litigation have dominated the league’s headlines for so long that lately its been difficult to even care about football. But sometimes a story comes along that makes even the most jaded football fan take pause and realize that there really are decent people in the league, courtesy of Steve Wyche at NFL.com.
When Joslyn Levell of Morgantown, W.V. (who has spina bifida and is confined to a wheelchair) told newly-drafted Bears linebacker (and former West Virginia Mountaineer) J.T. Thomas that no boys from her school would take her to the end-of-year formal, Thomas decided to make things right – by asking her to be his date to the dance.
Not surprisingly, it was another act of kindness by Thomas that allowed this date to happen. Joslyn is originally from Chicago and is a Bears fan. Hearing this, Thomas was nice enough to visit the kids on a bus that she shares with Thomas’ younger brother Jared, who suffers from autism.
After asking the school and her parents if it would be all right to ask her, the date was made – but not without one of those old-fashioned awkward middle school moments we have all experienced: Thomas was afraid Joslyn might already have a date before he could ask her.
And Thomas did his part to make the night memorable – renting a Chrysler and bringing Joslyn a bouquet of roses and a corsage. Keep in mind that Thomas, a sixth-round pick, is not guaranteed to even make the Bears roster and has not even drawn an NFL paycheck due to the lockout. The pair reportedly had a blast on the dance floor – but that wasn’t the best part of the night for Joslyn. The best part of the night was introducing her NFL player date to all the boys who told her “no.”
And if you there was still a part of you that is skeptical about the story, check out Thomas’s tweets from the night and you will see how genuine all of this was.
You have to admit, it’s nice to let go of your cynicism once in a while.