A Time For Panic or A Time For Faith?

Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

It's time to make a choice.

All the adversity I've had in my life, all my troubles and obstacles, have strengthened me... You may not realize it when it happens, but a kick in the teeth may be the best thing in the world for you. - Walt Disney

I've been told that I'm overly optimistic. Too positive. That I need to come back down to earth and face reality. I'm often told that being pessimistic would serve me better because when failure comes - and it always does - the pain will hurt less.

But the reality is, I'm not wired that way. If you are, and positivity or optimism turn you off - you may want to stop reading now. Seriously.

Let's not beat around the bush: the Falcons were just hit by the injury bug monster. In case you don't know, here's where we stand as of Tuesday evening:

* Kroy Biermann - out for the season

* Brady Ewing - out for the season

* Sean Weatherspoon - out minimum of 8 weeks

* Steven Jackson - out anywhere between 2 to 4 weeks

And this isn't the end. Guys like Babineaux, Roddy and Baker are banged up, though still playing. And while Samuel is likely to play Sunday, there's no telling how close he is to 100%. By my count, that is 8 of your 22 starters that are either not playing or are playing at less than 100%. For math nerds, that is over 1/3 of our starters.

But I'm refusing to panic. I'm choosing faith.

Here's the thing: faith is cheap when you maintain it during the easy times. It's true value - it's true merit - is found when you maintain it during the hardest of times. And make no mistake, the Falcons are about to face some hard times. You don't lose that many starters and contributors without experiencing some pains or bumps in the road.

But there is reason to believe they can overcome this - and if anything, be stronger for it:

* We have a coach who has overcome adversity before. Smitty. 2008. Enough said.

* We have a veteran locker room filled with leaders who know how to deal with adversity.

* We have some hungry young guys who will look at these injuries as their opportunity to shine.

* We have Matt Ryan.

Don't get me wrong. There's a strong possibility we are in for some ugly games as this team adjusts to the losses they've suffered. Our young guys may struggle as they cope with new responsibilities and higher expectations. And we may be in some dog fights that would have been easier games with all of our guys healthy. But that is the road we're on, for better or worse. Those hoping for an easy road should exit the car now.

But I firmly believe that these struggles and adversities - the "kick in the teeth" - will only make this team stronger in the long-run. There is no greater teacher than the struggle, and it would appear that our 2013 Falcons have been enrolled in the masters program.

My faith in this team makes me believe that not only will we make the playoffs, but this team will be mentally strong and tested once they get there. My faith in this quarterback makes me believe that when we need him, he will come through as he always has. My faith in this organization makes me believe that whatever move is needed to succeed, they will make it.

So, while it may seem like a time to panic - and our natural human instincts would lead us to do so - I'm choosing to believe.

I'm choosing faith.

How about you?

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