The Pittsburgh Steelers have their sights set on another Super Bowl championship after beating the New York Jets in the AFC championship last weekend.
All-pro Steelers safety Troy Polamalu has contributed to the team's success throughout the years. And he credits God for his athletic talent.
Passionate' About the Game
Polamalu's combination of speed, anticipation, and toughness make him ideal for the position of safety. In the 2008 season alone, he made more than 432 tackles, seven sacks, and 17 interceptions.
"I try to be passionate about every aspect of my life," Polamalu told CBN News. "How I love my wife, how I serve my wife, how I serve God. In the same way I try to be passionate about football. I try to serve my coaches with passion. I try to serve my teammates with passion. I try to serve God, through football, with passion."
Bringing Faith to the Field
Troy has been a Christian since college. After he entered the NFL in 2003, he's worked hard to maintain good character and not allow fame to get the best of him.
"Pride is tough," Polamalu said. "I don't think there's anywhere in the Scriptures through the saints lives where pride was ever a positive characteristic of anybody. That kind of egotism is a really tough struggle, especially in this business and this entertainment business that we have. It's a big struggle of mine."
Although pride can be a struggle for any athlete, Polamalu says that it's not the obvious things that are the hardest to deal with.
"It's like the big things that are the easiest to turn away from," he said. "It's like the accumulation of small things... [the devil's] strategy's always to be very subtle and continue to build on top of that evil seed that he planted."
Prayer During Times of Struggle
With all of the struggles and temptation that Polamalu faces, he says that prayer keeps him rooted.
"Prayer is a foundation. It's your communication with God. It's constant prayer - constant, constant, constant prayer," he proclaimed.
He is approaching his seventh season with the Steelers and shows no signs of slowing down. Whether he's making an interception, diving into a play for a tackle, or sacking a quarterback, Polamalu makes sure he keeps things in perspective.
"I don't love the sport in general," he said."I love the atmosphere football brings, I love being around my teammates, I love the struggle in football."
"I don't look at it as any more important or less important as any other part of my life," Polamalu added. "But, the fact that God has brought me here and has made this a part of my life - I do love that about football."