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Tony Dungy Defends On-Air Comments About Nick Foles' Christian Faith During Super Bowl

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Former NFL coach and now NBC Sports commentator Tony Dungy is responding to criticism on social media about his analysis of the strength of Philadelphia Eagles Quarterback Nick Foles' Christian faith in helping the Eagles defeat the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LII.

A strong Christian himself, Dungy responded in a tweet Tuesday writing, "NBC pays me to express my opinion. And it was my opinion that Nick Foles would play well because his Christian faith would allow him to play with confidence.  And that he's a good QB. I think I was right on both counts."

To date, Dungy's tweet has been retweeted more than 7,000 times and has received more than 45,000 likes.

Dungy followed up with another tweet to a non-Christian responder a few hours later writing, "Why would you find it hard to believe that the Holy Spirit could speak to Nick Foles just as much as a coach could speak to him?  If he credited a coach for saying 'Stay calm and be confident' that's good.  But if he tells me Christ says that to him, I shouldn't report it???"

CBN Sports Reporter Shawn Brown has interviewed Dungy this season and in the past. He also interviewed Foles several times this season. Brown says Dungy is correct in his commentary and Foles was thinking about quitting the game at the beginning of the season.

"Tony Dungy is right and Nick would agree. Tony knows what it's like to have people doubt your ability," Brown told CBN News.  "After all, he was fired from Tampa Bay, replaced by Jon Gruden who won a Super Bowl with a team Dungy put together. You'd have to believe Dungy went to God with questions. He relied on his faith to get back in the saddle and lead the Colts to the Super Bowl," Brown said giving perspective on the matter from Dungy's own life.

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"In the same fashion, Nick Foles was about to walk away from the game this offseason. He was traded by the Eagles to St.Louis Rams, who released him to Kansas City. After he wasn't signed there he had no job. He was about to throw in the towel," Brown explained. "Through prayer and putting faith in what He believes God had for him when the Eagles signed him as a "backup" he humbled himself believing that His opportunity would come. When his number was called, HE WAS READY," Brown went on to say.

"For those that don't understand how faith works, players rely on many things to keep their thoughts and perspective in check. For Foles, it was his faith," Brown noted. "I suppose it would be much more accepting to say Foles just put in extra work, but that simply wasn't the case. He relied on his faith to save him from himself. Which at the end of it all was the only thing that would have stopped him."

As CBN News has reported, Christian players expressing their faith isn't new in the NFL.  It's the revival that swept through the Eagles locker room during the season that people just can't stop talking about.

After the game, the head coach of the Eagles and some of their top players gave glory to God for the win on national television.

YOU CAN READ THAT STORY HERE: 'All the Glory Belongs to God': The Faith of the Super Bowl-Winning Philadelphia Eagles


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About The Author

Steve Warren is a senior multimedia producer for CBN News. Warren has worked in the news departments of television stations and cable networks across the country. In addition, he also worked as a producer-director in television production and on-air promotion. A Civil War historian, he authored the book The Second Battle of Cabin Creek: Brilliant Victory. It was the companion book to the television documentary titled Last Raid at Cabin Creek currently streaming on Amazon Prime. He holds an M.A. in Journalism from the University of Oklahoma and a B.A. in Communication from the University of