Writer’s Tip: Every Hero Has an Achilles Heel
According to WIKI, Achilles was a hero of the Trojan War and the greatest of all Greek warriors. In addition, he’s a central character of Homer's Iliad. Famous dude. Lived in the spotlight. An MVP. Big-time. He had just one weakness.
How could that be?
Great question. Here’s the answer: “…when his mother Thetis dipped him in the river Styx as an infant, she held him by one of his heels.”
That dip made him invulnerable—except, of course, for where his Mom held him.
Flash-forward to Monday night, Sept. 11, 2023. Another hero. Another warrior. “Grade A.” Numero Uno. MVP.
After a stellar career with the Green Bay Packers, Rodgers went from Cheese-head to Apple-head, when he became a quarterback for the New York Jets, where he was touted as a savior for a franchise that hadn’t been a consistent Super Bowl caliber team since Broadway Joe Namath led the J-E-T-S to a 16-7 upset victory over the Baltimore Colts at the Orange Bowl in Miami, Florida.
By the way, that was the third AFL–NFL Championship Game in pro football and the first to bear the moniker “Super Bowl”—but let’s get back to our tale of terror and tendons.
Aaron Rogers stepped on the field Sept. 11 to kick off a new era of hope for the Jets. There was even talk of Super Bowl run … finally.
The hope didn’t last long. Minutes into his first drive, the aging quarterback (he turns 40 in December) was sacked, injured, and helped off the field, never to return. It was later announced he was out for the season. The culprit: a torn Achilles tendon.
Rogers was a five-time All-Pro and 10-time Pro Bowler. An all-around MVP. To get him, the Jets gave up a first-round draft pick, a second-round pick, a sixth-round pick and a conditional 2024 second-round.
So much for so little return.
There are many lessons in the Aaron Rogers saga … “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket comes to mind.” What about you? Have you ever done that? I have … one time, long ago, I remember planning my future around winning one of those big-money contests at McDonald’s. … Didn’t win, but at least I got a great burger and fries out of it—which is more than what the Jets may end up with.
WRITER'S TIP: If you're crafting a story about a hero, remember to give him/her a weakness. For example, Indiana Jones was afraid of snakes. His Dad feared rats. Having a vulnerability raises the stakes in a hero's journey.