PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — It was the game-winning, record-setting kick celebrated, dissected and replayed by Eagles fans far and wide.
With one kick, Jake Elliott, a rookie kicker, cut by the Cincinnati Bengals, picked up just recently by the Eagles, went from relative unknown to Philly sports hero.
JESSICA DEAN: “Do you think that’s the lesson people should take away from Jake Elliott as it goes to now, is that hard work pays off? What’s the lesson?
JAKE ELLIOTT: “Yeah, I would say hard work pays off, use all the resources you have and put yourself in a good situation to be successful.”
Elliott found football by chance. He played tennis in high school, only joining the football team after the coaches saw him kick a few field goals at a pep rally for fun.
JESSICA DEAN: “So I want to take you back to your high school self and now you see yourself in the Eagles locker room, your name is up there, you are the city’s hero, do you ever look around and say, ‘Is this real? I’m pinching myself.’ Or do you think, ‘No this was always my destiny?’”
JAKE ELLIOTT: “Yeah it’s definitely surreal, but no I feel like I’ve worked for everything that I’ve gotten and obviously a ton of support on your way and a little bit of luck, so yeah, I’m just honored to be here.”
He’s learned a lot along the way, including a mental toughness that helped him make that historic kick after missing two earlier in the game.
JAKE ELLIOTT: “I just kind of look at, I just have a one-minute rule that I’ve gone after for a bunch of years now. Whether I make a kick or miss a kick, I kind of have to take one minute to either enjoy it or think about it, dwell on it and just kind of refocus and get after the next one.”
Perseverance. Hard work. And a victory.
To that we give three cheers to Jake Elliott.