Brown's Receiver Andre King
Integrity and good character are strengths that Andre King brings to the field

by Matthias R. Monschein

  Andre King

It has been written that "The integrity of men is to be measured by their conduct and not by their professions." I do not believe they had the Cleveland Browns in mind when they first came up with this popular quote but it is a perfect description of a number of the Christian team mates that share a common bond with each other within the organization.

Andre King is a wide receiver for the Cleveland Browns. If you are going to look for a man that fits the description of a man of integrity you should look no further than the locker room of the Cleveland Browns.

One of the first things that you will notice about the 2003 Cleveland Browns happens to be the strength and the spiritual foundation within the locker room. Gone are the taboo insecurities of stating the claim that you are a Christian now, thanks to Head Coach Butch Davis, it has become an acceptable practice to share ones beliefs.

"You have guys around the locker room like team Chaplain Tom Petersburg that helps to draw you to your faith," said King. "Our head coach Butch Davis is a good Christian man and on through the top down it allows you to feel comfortable. You don't have to come into a locker room and hide it. You don't have to come into an organization and be afraid to be a Christian. It is freely open. The Chaplain is allowed to come in here. A few years ago Tom was not even able to come in side the facility. You have other people around all of the time that you can go to and confide with because in a way you are on the same level. It is real comforting coming into this facility," added King.

One of Andre's accountability partners happens to be one of his best friends and fellow wide receiver, Andre Davis. King Shares the locker next to Davis. The two young men can keep track of each other and keep each other accountable as they and their families walk with the Lord.

But King will be the first to let you know that this may not have been possible had he not listened one evening at a Fellowship of Christians athletes meeting.

"Coming to find out about the Lord has changed things on a dramatic basis for me, "explained King. "I have dealt very much with the insecurity of not being able to know (the) future. I can remember on one weekend I went to this retreat and through the course of the night, they asked one question that convicted me right on the spot. 'If you were to die tonight will you go to heaven?' I thought about it and realized that my answer had to change."

One man who has made a world of difference in Andre King's life has to be that of the former coach of the Miami Hurricanes and now head coach of the Cleveland Browns, Butch Davis.

"I have been playing for Butch going on seven years now four of them at the University of Miami. He has always brought people around for instance different players and different coaches and people of great character. Butch is the type of man that even when he is hiring people in the front office. You have to be a person of good character to work for Butch. That particular instance leads to faith. He brings people around that are faithful and good servants to give us a different perspective to life and also to show us that there is also a life outside of football to live for," King declared.

"Butch has an open door policy about anything," Be it family, football or your faith, you can talk to coach Davis about anything. He and his wife Tammy are just excellent folks to get to know. You can go to him and know that he and help resolve the issue."

During his interview with Connection Magazine, Andre directed the attention away from himself and towards the people who surround him. He is a man of fine character and it is easy to see just why Butch Davis chose him. Andre has progressed as a Christian, and that is due in part to the company he keeps.

Good Character is more to be praised than outstanding talent. Most talents are to some extent a gift from the Lord. Integrity and Good character by contrast is not just given to us, we have to build it piece by piece - by thought, choice, courage and determination.

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