SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — A well-known Philadelphia Eagles player, Vince Papale, made a visit to the Ritz Theater in Scranton on Thursday.
Best known for the movie about his life, Invincible, he spoke to several Lackawanna high school football teams about his journey.
Vince Papale, who played three seasons with the Philadelphia Eagles in the late 70s, spoke to dozens of students this afternoon about the importance of being a passionate student first, and then an athlete.
Papale gained attention for his story, making the Eagles’ roster against the odds at age 30 with no prior college football experience.
“You look into their eyes and you see that hungry look in their eyes. I see myself a thousand times. I’m looking at them and it was really cool to put together a little power point,” said Papale.
He wanted to impart some of his wisdom to student-athletes who may have many years of football ahead of them.
“One of them is just to never let anyone tell you that you can’t do something. You really believe in what you want to do. You have the potential to do that, but the potential is not something that automatically comes out. You have to work at it and sacrifice,” advised Papale.
He has years of motivational speeches under his belt,-since the movie about his life came out almost 20 years ago.
“At the beginning when the movie first came out, it was maybe three a week for two or three years. I guess I don’t know, over a thousand easily,” estimated Papale.
While he hasn’t been to Scranton a lot, he loves visiting the area and was happy to make the drive.
“Probably the mountains. I’ve been to this area and the Poconos so many times. That’s one of my favorite things,” stated Papale.
His advice, for players or spectators, goes beyond the football field.
“You know be a leader, but be yourself. Don’t try to be somebody that you’re not, just because you want to be accepted by somebody that you think you need to be accepted by. Just be yourself. But the one thing, the one thing is to win the day, get through the day. Get your momentum going so you can get through tomorrow and the weekend. More than anything, win the day and be invincible,” said Papale.
Papale will be at the Ritz Theater in Scranton Thursday night at 7:00 p.m. to show and discuss the movie, with tickets still on sale to the public.