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CBN.com San Francisco 49ers Defensive Tackle Bryant Young is a powerhouse on the field. The 6’3 290-pounder is a force most quarterbacks fear when they have the ball.
Not just feared -- he’s respected. Bryant’s the only player to win the team’s award for courage and leadership five times. He started his career in style in 1994, picking up a Super Bowl ring, and the Rookie of the Year award. Yet, with all his recognition, B.Y., as they call him, says that it’s all about one thing.
“The way I try to live my life is [to] let God’s light shine through me,” says Bryant Young. “God has given us obviously the tools and the ability to play this game and so with that it’s my responsibility to go out and glorify God in the best way that I possibly can. When you’re giving God the glory, that’s what it’s all about.”
Bryant accepted Christ at an early age but says there was still more he needed to do.
“We won that Super Bowl… It was a great feeling to win the ultimate game in this profession, but at the same time, I just felt like I was still missing something,” says Young. “A lot of times we go through our life, and we don’t allow Christ in certain areas. We begin to protect those areas and think it’s okay. When I began to surrender every area in my life to Christ and ask him to intervene, that’s when I began to have that peace.”
Asking God to intervene really came into play during a game against the New York Giants in 1998.
“I was chasing a quarterback, and as he broke out of the pocket, I began to pursue him,” recalls Young. “He slid, and as I was beginning to stop running after him, I planted. A teammate of mine ran right into my leg, and it broke the tibia and fibula.”
With a crushed leg, was Bryant’s football career over? If not, one thing was certain, it was going to be a struggle getting back to the field.
“It was definitely a tough road back because there were times in rehab where progress was at a stand still,” says Young. “But something in me just wouldn’t allow me to give up. By the grace of God, He allowed me to fight through it and get back on the field that next year.”
He wasn’t just back on the field. He played every game that season and was named Defensive Player of the Year.
“Without God’s power, and strength, and prayer, it would not be possible for me to have made it through that injury. Because, like I said, there were times that days and weeks just seemed like things were going anywhere. But I continued to pray and have faith. God allowed things to happened that I couldn’t even see.”
Since the injury, Bryant says he is here to do more than just play football. He wants to share this message.
“Try Jesus. To me, it’s the only way. A lot of times we’re confused, and we go through difficult circumstances. We don’t know who to turn to… Try Jesus. He works.”
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