Shaquem and Shaquill Griffin are twins who’ve always dreamed of playing in the NFL together.
They’ve played football together at every other level, from Pop Warner through college, but it looked like the dream would end there.
You see, Shaquem only has one hand, and no player like him has ever been drafted before.
So, when he starred for the undefeated UCF Knights and earned Conference Defensive Player of the Year honors, we took notice.
When he shined at the NFL Draft Combine, posting the fastest forty-yard-dash by any linebacker and racing up the draft board, inspiring young athletes all over the world, we paid attention.
When the Seattle Seahawks selected Shaquem with the 141st overall pick in the draft, we all stood up and cheered.
Some observers thought that the pick might have been sentimental at heart, since Shaquem’s brother was already a starting cornerback for the Seahawks. But Seattle coach Pete Carroll is not one for sentimentality, and many, many NFL-ready players were dropped by Seattle in each round of cuts.
Shaquem was never among them. He wasn’t ever really on the bubble. Through the preseason, Griffin shined on special teams and on defense, even leading the team in tackles in their final preseason game against the Raiders.
Making the 53-man roster of an NFL team is a major accomplishment for any young football player, but Griffin isn’t in Seattle to celebrate milestones. He’s there to help his team win games.
In an amazing development, Griffin got his first chance to do just that last Sunday as a starting linebacker, recording two tackles in a tight loss against the Broncos.
We tuned to watch him do something that many people told him was impossible.
If Shaquem Griffin can earn a starting spot over professional competition and take the field with his twin brother to complete a dream that’s fifteen years in the making, what can you do?