Eagles running back Boston Scott explains what Joshua 1:9 means to him

 Boston Scott #35 of the Philadelphia Eagles carries the ball against the Washington Redskins during the first half at FedExField on December 15, 2019, in Landover, Maryland.
Boston Scott #35 of the Philadelphia Eagles carries the ball against the Washington Redskins during the first half at FedExField on December 15, 2019, in Landover, Maryland. | Getty Images/Scott Taetsch

Before scoring three touchdowns on Sunday to help the Philadelphia Eagles clinch a playoff birth, running back Boston Scott explained in a radio interview how the Old Testament verse Joshua 1:9 has given him confidence in the face of adversity as a smaller football player. 

Scott, 24, recently sat down with Associated Press sportswriter Rob Maaddi to take part in his “Faith on the Field” radio program broadcast from Center Square Tavern in Woolwich Township, New Jersey. 

At 5 feet 7 inches tall and about 203 pounds, Scott has been considered undersized throughout his career and even in college when he was a walk-on at Louisiana Tech University. He was promoted from the Eagles' practice squad to the gameday roster back in October.

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In a game against the New York Giants on Sunday, Scott silenced any doubters as he had the best game of his young National Football League career. He scored three rush touchdowns and rushed for 54 yards on top of recording 84 receiving yards on six receptions. The performance earned Scott the title of NFC Offensive Player of the Week

Scott explained in his interview with Maaddi that although there have been doubters of his abilities throughout his career, he has taken most of his motivation from his desire to prove those who have believed in him right. 

“That’s the kind of a mindset that is a little biblical,” Maaddi replied. “I know you are a believer and you are a brother in Christ. We appreciate that about you too, as well. We do appreciate who you are, not just who you are on the field but who you are inside as a man of Christ, as a believer.”

Maaddi noted that Scott posted Joshua 1:9 on his Twitter bio. 

The verse reads: “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go."

After pointing out that Joshua 1:9 and Philippians 4:13 are both common verses favorited by many athletes, Maaddi asked Scott to explain what the significance of Joshua 1:9 is to him. 

“So that [verse] stuck with me for a long time,” Scott said. “I’ve definitely been through a lot of adversity. I was a walk-on at Louisiana Tech. There were a lot of times when I faced adversity with injuries [and] with not playing.”

Scott continued by saying that he understands that the NFL is like a “revolving door” where “you can be in” or “you can be out” depending on your performance.

“How you perform on the field kind of dictates how people see you and how people view you,” Scott explained. “But I know that at the end of the day, no matter if I am the best football player or if things don’t even work out with football, I know that regardless, God loves me for who I am. That is not going to change regardless of what happens to me.”

“So whether that is stepping on the field, whether that’s in life, I know that no matter what I go through, He is always going to be with me no matter what,” Scott added.  “That’s why I carry myself with confidence. That’s why I am strong. That’s why I am courageous, because that is what He has commanded us to be.”

The Eagles are a team with many believers in Christ. The Franchise is about two seasons removed from its first Super Bowl victory. Along with interviewing the Eagles' players, Maaddi also wrote a book titled Birds of Pray: The Story of the Philadelphia Eagles’ Faith, Brotherhood, and Super Bowl Victorypublished by Zondervan. 

The book details how the players on the championship team held each other accountable on and off the field. It also describes the players' weekly Bible studies and prayer gatherings the night before games. 

With Scott being new to the Eagles in 2019, Maaddi asked him his thoughts on the team’s faith culture. 

“It is really cool to see not just players but coaches and people that are involved in administration take part in the Bible studies and the chapel,” Scott said. “Like I said, there is a great nucleus of guys on the team that believe: Zach Ertz, Carson Wentz, Greg Ward. There are guys that I can continue to name that are there consistently. I know there are guys that are there that I can confide in if I have something come up in my life.”

Scott assured that he and his teammates know that God has a greater assignment for them than football.  

“At the end of the day, we are playing a game,” Scott stressed. “The bigger picture here is that we are on a mission … to spread the good news of Jesus Christ. And, we do that using our platform. We understand that’s the main objective for us as followers.”

Before he joined the Eagles, Scott played his rookie season with his hometown team, the New Orleans Saints. It was there that he was teammates with and sought advice from one of the league’s most respected veterans and devout Christians, Benjamin Watson. 

“Anytime I could I was trying to sit down and talk to him just to pick his brain,” Scott said. “He has been a part of a lot of teams. So I was just trying to soak up as much wisdom as I could. He had plenty to say. [He's a] very intelligent individual. He is very involved with social issues and I have a lot of respect for him.”

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