Learning from Movies: The Replacements

Posted on April 11, 2011


Back in 2000, a terrific cast made a football movie about NFL players going on strike, and non-union players coming in to finish the season. It’s a terrific comedy, and you should see it. If you haven’t, let me share some of its wisdom with you.

  • Nobody likes a quitter.
    • It sounds trite, but nobody remembers the people who quit.
  • You don’t get points for trying.
    • I’ve met too many young people who don’t understand this. Don’t tell me that you tried, tell me what you learned or tell me that you did the job.
  • Winners always want the ball when the game is on the line.
    • Just like leaders always want to lead, winners always want to make the big play and bring home a win.
  • Listen up. There are some who will say that your accomplishments today will soon be forgotten, that you’re not real players, that this isn’t a real team. And I say that’s bullshit.
    • Learn to ignore the haters. There will always people who talk negatively about you, your team, and your work. Focus on the supportive people.
  • I wanna get you the ball!
    • Focus
  • Go sit down, Danny
    • When you get the job done, get off the field.
  • A real man admits his fears.
    • Take it from a guy with a Bronze Star from the First Gulf War – everyone is afraid. Brave people accept their fears and do the job anyway.
  • I look at you and I see two men: the man you are, and the man you ought to be. Someday those two will meet. Should make for a hell of a football player.
    • When you look in the mirror, see the person that you want to be and do one thing today to become that person.
  • Like a duck on the pond. On the surface everything looks calm, but beneath the water those little feet are churning a mile a minute.
    • That person you think is calm and unafraid? He’s just faking it. If you look beneath the surface, he’s just as scared as you are. Learn that surface calm and fake it ‘til you make it.
  • Don’t do anything great if you can’t handle the congratulations.
    • When you succeed at something great, people expect you to do more with less. Be ready for that.
  • There is no tomorrow for you, and that makes you all very dangerous people!
    • Write your resignation letter but don’t date it. Put it in a desk drawer, and then go out and do your job the way you would if today was your last day. Live like you have nothing left to lose.
  • What they didn’t know, was that their lives had been changed forever because they had been part of something great. And greatness, no matter how brief, stays with a man.
    • Winning is a habit that you already have. Remember your successes, and duplicate them.
Posted in: Leadership, Movies