ASHBURN, Va. – The accomplishment might become routine for some players, but scoring a touchdown doesn’t get old for many others. It’s a rarity – and they also know how difficult it is to do. Last season, for example, 124 players rushed for at least one touchdown. But only 75 rushed for more than one.
Washington Redskins fullback Darrel Young understands the feeling – and he’s never forgotten his first NFL touchdown. It happened on Nov. 15, 2010 in a 59-28 Monday night loss to Philadelphia, when Young caught a 3-yard touchdown pass. Young has scored 12 more touchdowns in his career; the first one stands out, as he explains in his own words:
The memory: “Hell, yeah, I remember. Monday Night Football. Donovan McNabb. Mike Sellers was poked in his eye so I came in. It was my mother’s birthday so I can’t forget it.”
How it happened: “Donovan looked at me in the huddle and said, ‘It’s coming to you.’ I was like, 'All right, it’s cool.' It was a pass play, a keeper. That’s my play. Don’t tell anybody. I scored and I remember saying, 'This is something.' I accomplished my dream and since I’m playing in the NFL, now I want to make it to the top-tier level and be a starter. But this is something everyone lives for – Monday Night Football, scoring a TD and my brother was watching in Afghanistan. It was something I’ll never forget.”
The feeling: “The air felt different in the end zone. It’s not butterflies. It’s this sense of excitement because you know everyone is cheering for you in the stadium. You come back to the sidelines and everyone is excited for you and it’s that feeling. Not that it’s a selfish moment, but you did something to help the team out. It’s different than scoring at [other levels of football]. This is the highest level. Being a professional athlete, what better stage to go out and perform than in front of the world and have everyone cheer your name in a positive way. I still haven’t come down from it. It’s all people talked about, ‘Hey, I remember when you scored on Monday Night Football.’ I’m never going to come down from that. That’s what you live for, you live for memories. Football has helped me to try and become a better player and person.”
On keeping the ball: “Hell, yeah. It’s hanging up at home in a framed case. I got it painted with the date, the touchdown, who we played and the score.”