If the success of Friday Night Lights taught us anything it’s that America loves a good underdog story. Coach Eric Taylor (Kyle Chandler) and his players regularly fought against hardship in order to become better football players – and better men. But while the show focused on the drama of a small town obsessed with the game, plenty of action happened on the turf as well.
Between life-threatening injuries, brawls between teammates, Hail Mary victories, and soul-crushing defeats, the Panthers (and later, the Lions) weathered them all together under a coach who accepted nothing less than complete devotion to the game. Taylor hammered into his players a respect for time – 6 a.m. sharp means a quarter to six if you didn’t know – and effort. You didn’t have to be better than everyone else but you had to try. It’s the trying that makes the man.
These players proved that during their time sporting a Dillon jersey, overcoming incredible obstacles and defying unbelievable odds to become leaders on the field and off. Here are the five greatest underdog stories Friday Night Lights ever gave us.
As Slammin Sammy Meade would say:
“Feed the dogs, spit on the fire, lock up your daughters, sit down and shut up, because it’s game time, people!”