My Morning At The Atlanta Falcons Training Camp

Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan (2) attempts a pass during the morning session of NFL football training camp in Flowery Branch, Ga., Saturday, July 31, 2010.

This past weekend my family traveled to Flowery Branch, GA to witness the morning workout of the Atlanta Falcons.  My wife put up a valiant effort to stay engaged but my daughter did not even try to fight her boredom.  From a leadership perspective however, there were several takeaways for me.

  1. Those In The Stands Pay.  Those On The Field Get Paid – As we sat in our lawn chairs overlooking the practice field, I was reminded that one of the blessings of life is when we get off the sidelines and get into the game.  If you’re not volunteering at your church or in your community, I advise you to get into the game and “get paid”.  For more information on this idea, read 10 Privileges Of Being A Volunteer.
  2. Skill Determines Opportunity – There is a belief that everyone should have the same opportunity in an organization.  This belief  says that everyone should get the same amount of the boss’s time, the same customer list, the same expense account, etc…  We view this as “being fair”.  In professional sports, skill determines opportunity.  Chris Redman does not get the same number of practice reps as Matt Ryan.  Jason Snelling does not get as much time with the 1st team offensive line as Michael Turner.  As a leader, if you are determining assignments on “fairness”, your organization will not achieve its full potential.
  3. Pacing – There is no wasted time in a professional practice.  Every moment is scripted and each player knows where to be at any giving moment.  For your organization to succeed, it must minimize and eliminate waste.  You must passionately guard the gift of time.
  4. Early Preparation – All Falcon players were signed and in camp on time including 1st round selection Sean Weatherspoon.  One thing history teaches us is when players sign early and maximize their practice time, they ultimately perform better during the season.  Leaders, is your team maximizing its opportunities for preparation and training?  Oh by the way, Weatherspoon is big, fast, and always around the ball.  Barring injury, he will make a significant impact this year. 

The Atlanta Falcons will be very good this season and should make the play-offs.  When you watch them practice, it’s easy to understand why.  

One more thing – I now owe my daughter a date to new Selena Gomez movie and I think my wife has shopping at the mall in store for me.  The Falcons better be good!

For future leadership insights, please subscribe to this post or click here.

About Brian Dodd on Leadership

I am a church stewardship and leadership consultant for INJOY Stewardship Solutions. This blog combines my personal passions of church, sports, pop culture and family into a single leadership resource. I trust your time on this site will create conversations and add value to your life.


  1. The Morning Commute: August 3, 2010 « - 08/03/2010

    […] Falcons practice speaks volumes about the […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: