We are Joe Sakic, 39 but still with the great wrist shot, still hockey captain of the Avalanche. We are Joe Flacco, Baltimore's rookie quarterback, Delaware Fightin' Blue Hen, who looked like a real pro for the first time last week at Miami.
We are Paterno and Maddon, regular Joes who look at the world through thick glasses and a Pennsylvania prism. Paterno has been head coach at Penn State for 43 years now, and for the last eight or nine he's had to hear all about being washed-up. This week his undefeated Lions play at Ohio State. Vindicated? "I don't know what there is to vindicate," Joe the Coach says.
Maddon meanwhile bounced around with the Angels for 31 years before getting his shot to be the boss. Few thought the Rays could win when he was hired. They never had before. Joe figured hard work could do the trick. Joe's mother, Beanie, still waits on customers at the Third Base Luncheonette in Hazleton, Pa. "We're working people," Joe the Manager says.
Yes, we are. Once again, a nation turns its lonely eyes to us Everyday and Average Joes. Look around. We're right here.