Former Baltimore Ravens' O.J. Brigance, Afflicted With ALS, Is A Source Of Inspiration For His Team
O.J. Brigance, 43, the former Baltimore Ravens linebacker whose football days ended when he was stricken with ALS, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, otherwise known as Lou Gehrig's Disease, watched from his wheelchair on Sunday night as his former team took home the Super Bowl 2013 honors.
After the Ravens' victory, player Ed Reed presented Brigance with a game ball to express how he has been a source of inspiration for the team in their unlikely climb toward the Super Bowl victory.
“There aren’t enough words to describe what that man means to me and to this team,” punter Sam Koch told the Baltimore Sun. “Just seeing ‘Juice’ here with a smile on his face is inspiring. If I have to choose a word for him, it would be ‘powerful.’"
Brigance feels the same way about his former team. “Super Bowl XLVII means so much to me,” O.J. Brigance said though a DynaVox machine, as his illness has progressed to the point that he is unable to speak, “not because of the game but because of the journey it took to get here. That’s where the maturation comes. I predict a Ravens victory, of course. But there is no failure if you have done all you can do.”