The next day most of the cubicles in the Three Rivers locker room have been emptied. Jackson is packing. Malone goes over and says, "Jack-legs, you be sure to come back ready to play. It'll be a different story."
Jackson tugs on the bill of his cap and is gone.
Malone tells Stallworth, "I'll call you next week. I've got some people lobbying me to make sure you're going to play next fall," Webster and Shell have announced they'll return. Stallworth smiles, but he won't tip his hand about next year.
Sitting on a stool in front of his locker, Malone lets the wisdom forged in adversity come through: "It would be nice to think that whatever we attained toward the end of the season will be there automatically in training camp. Unfortunately, it doesn't work that way. I'll have to start from scratch again. At least, though, we'll know what we're capable of when we're tested. But nothing's certain. Nothing."