Browns players talk about team and their relationships with God

Kali Price

The upcoming NFL draft, women and spiritual testimonies were the topics of conversation last night in Bowman Hall.

Cleveland Browns tight end Paul Irons and running back Jason Wright answered students’ questions, signed autographs and talked about their own spiritual experiences for “A Night with the Cleveland Browns” co-sponsored by Impact and the Dive.

Irons and Wright spoke with the Kent State football team yesterday afternoon as well.

Nyema Bedell, senior business management major and president of Impact, said the groups invited the players to come together to spread the gospel message and attract students.

“It was outreach,” Bedell said. “Everyone’s interested in sports. It’s good to see that athletes can still be about God. It’s something we’ve been working on together. It’s good to be coming together in communion with God and come together for outreach.”

Team chaplain Tom Petersburg accompanied Irons and Wright. Petersburg has been with the team since 1979 and spoke about his work with the team as well.

“It takes them so much more to succeed than just their ability,” Petersburg said.

Students and other audience members were asked to write down questions for Irons and Wright as they came in. The questions started out about football, and Irons and Wright said the Browns may be looking to draft some defensive players, but are unsure of how the team will shape up after the NFL draft at the end of the month.

“Our guess is as good as yours,” Wright said.

Aside from the draft, Wright and Irons don’t dislike the Steelers as much as some may think.

“I haven’t been here long enough,” Wright said, “but I did get flipped off by two 11-year-old boys at Heinz Field.”

Wright also said teammates Kellen Winslow and Braylon Edwards are recovering well.

They moved on to discuss their biggest transitions from college to the NFL.

“The hardest thing to adjust to is the tumultuous environment of professional football,” Wright said.

Irons added that another main difference is the fact that in college, players are competing for playing time, but in the NFL, players are competing for their jobs.

“There’s a lot stacked up against you,” he said. “You have to have something outside of you that sustains you, and for me and Jason, that’s Jesus Christ.”

The pair also gave testimonials about their personal experiences with God and gave encouraging messages to the audience about life, relationships and success.

“If you place yourself in the realm of people who have great character, you begin to live your Christian life in areas that will prepare you for greater areas,” Wright said.

Contact sports editor Kali Price at [email protected]