After navigating two years filled with unfathomable challenges, John Metchie attributes his endurance and recovery to his faith in God.
While a University of Alabama standout, Metchie tore his ACL in the SEC Championship game against Georgia in 2021, just months before the 2022 NFL draft, where he was expected to be one of the top receivers selected.
Though he was expected to miss his entire rookie season due to the knee injury, the Houston Texans selected Metchie with the 44th overall pick.
Then, just months after the draft, Metchie was diagnosed with cancer, Acute Promyelocytic Leukemia.
Rather than feeling sorry for himself, Metchie says he did the only thing he knew to do: respond in faith.
“You don’t know what’s gonna happen. You don’t know what the future has in store for you,” Metchie said, according to NFL.com. “You, of course, hope that you can overcome it and play football, but I would say probably in the beginning stages, there might’ve been some doubt. But I’ve had a strong faith.
“I had a strong faith then, and I have a strong faith now.”
After being cleared to participate in training camp this year, Metchie spoke to the media for the first time on Aug. 3. When asked how he got through the treacherous last few years, Metchie echoed a familiar sentiment:
“My faith,” Metchie said at the Texans press conference. “My faith in God, and my mom and my (four) brothers.
“You can only rely on your faith in those situations. In situations when you’re forced to be faced with your own mortality, you see what it is you really believe in and who it is you really believe in. So my faith in God is really what kept me comfortable in a belief that this was all for a greater purpose and a bigger reason.”
The 23-year-old receiver also recalled his time at MD Anderson Cancer Center, looking out the window at the Texans stadium and practice facility. Metchie wondered at that point if he’d ever play football again.
Despite all the setbacks, he knew God was going to work it all out.
“I knew at that moment that God had a plan for me, and I was going to be all right,” Metchie said of the moment he heard the life-altering cancer diagnosis.
Now, the Texans receiver is feeling fully healthy for the first time since before college.
Texans head coach DeMeco Ryans, also a committed Christian, spoke glowingly of Metchie’s recovery at the Aug. 3 press conference:
“John Metchie’s demeanor, it hasn’t changed. He’s the same. He’s consistent. He’s positive. He’s a hard worker. Whenever he’s out here at practice, he’s giving everything he has. You see him after practice doing extra. He’s trying to perfect his craft. So, excited with his mentality and work ethic. It’s cool to see.”
Metchie and the Texans take on the Baltimore Ravens in their first regular season game on Sept. 10.