Winston Churchill once said, “A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist see the opportunity in every difficulty”.  For Seattle Seahawks fullback Derrick Coleman, Jr., being an optimist is something he seems to have always done, and it has landed him in the Super Bowl.

Derrick Coleman from Getty Images1 Derrick Coleman is someone ALL NFL Fans should cheer for

Derrick Coleman against the Saints.  (Image from Getty Images)

Derrick Coleman is the first deaf person to play in the National Football League.  After going thru the 2012 draft without being selected, Coleman was signed by the Minnesota Vikings after playing his college football at UCLA, near his birthplace of West Los Angeles, California.  He did not make the Vikings and was cut that summer; in December, 2012 he was signed by the Seattle Seahawks; in 2013 he made the team and was on the roster opening week when they played and beat the Carolina Panthers.  He scored his first career touchdown on Monday night, December 2nd against the New Orleans Saints.

Earning the respect of teammates and coaches is not easy in the NFL and is not given out quickly; however, Derrick Coleman as earned the respect of his Seahawks coaches and teammates for what he can do on the field, what he does to get to the field and what he has overcome just to reach the NFL.  Seattle’s Head Coach Pete Carroll has said about Coleman being deaf, “I don’t know if I could overcome what he’s overcome”.  Tight end Zack Miller has said, “Physically, he’s a star, straight up.  Beyond that, he’s a lot more. He’s a hero to a lot of people”.  Cornerback Richard Sherman added, “He’s a humble guy who works hard, and has never made an excuse. He’s an inspiration.”  When asked about inspiring anyone, Derrick Coleman said simply, “Don’t know if I’m an inspiration.  “I just try to be me.”

There is a nine-year old girl living in New Jersey who called Derrick Coleman “her inspiration” when she wrote him a letter; the letter was posted on her father’s Twitter account.  As the humble person that Derrick Coleman his, he said those two words that so many of us should say but few of us actually do, Thank You.  He wrote back the little girl and posted his note on his own Twitter account (@DC2forlife).

Derrick Coleman letters Derrick Coleman is someone ALL NFL Fans should cheer for

A letter written to Derrick Coleman by a nine year old fan and his hand written reply. (Images from Twitter @DC2forlife)

Earlier this month, a commercial featuring Derrick Coleman, Jr. was released by Duracell batteries.  Here is a link to the video posted on You Tube:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u2HD57z4F8E

On Saturday, January 25th, Derrick Coleman sent out his eleventh tweet, it read, “if you want something you’ve never had you have to do something you’ve never done!”  While Derrick has already done something no one else had done in the sport of football, chances are he is not done doing more things, on and off the football field.

 Derrick Coleman is someone ALL NFL Fans should cheer for