Senior day is always emotional. But today’s game was extra heartwarming thanks to the return of Josh Paschal. By now, you’ve probably seen Paschal’s emotional post-game interview, where he said his return was “God’s plan.” Of course, Paschal was humble about his return to football. But his teammates didn’t have to be. Kash Daniel even called Paschal’s return the highlight of his year.
“To see JP out there, it’s unbelievable. He’s been through so much,” Daniel said. “You guys know the big picture of it but you don’t know the little things, the mental part that he had to deal with.”
According to multiple players, Paschal’s attitude throughout this entire process has been spectacular. It’s incredibly impressive for anyone to remain upbeat and determined after a cancer diagnosis, but for someone his age, it’s even more special. He leaned on his family, his faith and, of course, his teammates, many of whom still wear their “JP on 3” bracelets.
“Oh my gosh, it made me want to cry,” Benny Snell said of watching Paschal on the field. “Yo, especially when he made his first tackle. He was telling me he was a little rusty, he’s still got some work to do, but I’m like, bro, it is a blessing to see how far he’s come. I still look at this everyday, [looking at his bracelet] and it’s just crazy. That was a heartwarming moment. I love Josh.”
When something so life changing happens to someone you’re close with, it’s easy to imagine yourself in their shoes. But for guys like Kash Daniel and Mike Edwards, that’s almost impossible.
“The stuff that he went through – I don’t know if I could go through it,” Edwards said. “He’s a tough, tough person. A tough player and a tough person off the field and on the field.”
“The kid’s always got a great attitude. If that happened to me, I’d have the worst attitude ever. I’m in a bad attitude right now after the game, so imagine if I had that,” Daniel said. “Josh is an unbelievable guy. I’m honored to be his teammate and I can’t wait to see him play two more games this year.”
And it’s a good thing the Cats have two more games on their schedule. Because great attitude or not, Josh Allen isn’t quite ready to promote Paschal to a full-on Blitz Bro.
“He’s still blitz baby. He ain’t got a sack yet,” Allen said with a smile. “If he gets one next week, we’ll probably upgrade him.”
I think he’s earned that.