So I know my internet audience is similar to the bulk of my actual friends in that they view my obsession with the NFL’s New England Patriots on a spectrum ranging from “tolerably endearing” to “dramatically lame.” In the spirit of keeping everyone interested, I do not post the preponderance of NFL-related media that I could.
That said, even people who don’t like football should enjoy the above clip. The context you need is that the big fella who ends up carrying the ball, Dan Connolly, is an offensive lineman. They are hefty (Connolly weighs 313 lbs) and spend every play lining up opposite similarly large men. His task is to keep these opponents from hitting his team-mates, or to hit these opponents in such a way that his team-mates can run around them with maximum efficiency. He never, ever touches the ball; in fact, injured linemen can play with huge casts covering their entire hands.
In the above video, Connolly is preparing to do his regular job: Lining up to block opposing players from tackling the wide receiver everyone anticipates will recover the kick-off. But the opposing team decides to do something pretty tricky: Kick it to the lineman, who will either fall on the ball or maybe mishandle it, creating confusion and an opportunity for a turn-over.
Instead, Connolly runs down the field for 71 yards — an NFL record for his position — setting up the Patriots for a touchdown on the ensuing posession.
Haters are going to underestimate. Sometimes, you get a chance to prove them wrong. Who doesn’t love to see it happen?