Vince Papale        

Legendary NFL Player and Inspiration for the Movie "Invincible"

In 1976 Vince Papale was in his 6th year of teaching at his alma mater, Interboro High School while was working on his master’s degree in counseling and also coaching football and track. As a 10 year season ticket holder for his beloved Philadelphia Eagles Vince had a dream . . . to be an Eagle. At the same time the USA was celebrating its bi-centennial birthday. 1976 was a time when Philadelphia fans were buried in 11 years of defeat, when Americans were battling the lingering effects of Watergate, the Vietnam War, and a sweeping energy crisis. Ordinary people appeared badly in need of a champion from their ranks, and this local schoolteacher/coach answered their call.

The Philadelphia Eagles had hired a passionate and idealistic rookie Head Coach, Dick Vermeil, who boldly announced that he wanted to shake up his new team and publicized that he was going to conduct an open tryout for all comers. Ignoring all of the nay sayers and doubters Vince not only attended the try out but he was offered a contract on the spot and he got the sweet and ultimate last laugh by making the team.

Re-inventing himself from a 30 year schoolteacher, who did not play football in college, to an NFL star, Vince Papale defied the million to one odds against him. Not only did he make the team but he was voted by his teammates Captain of the Special Teams and most recently was selected by the fans as the best Special Teamer in the Eagles 75 year history.

He has received numerous awards around the country for his charitable contributions and efforts including the coveted Vince Lombardi Award for Courage for overcoming his bout with colon cancer. He lends his support to too many charitable organizations to mention but Vince is very proud to note he has had the American Flag flown in his honor over the United States Capitol and by the troops in Afghanistan, whom he considers his heroes!

He is married to the former Janet Cantwell who was on the USA World Gymnastics team. They have two children, Gabriella and Vincent. Vince is the subject of the blockbuster Disney movie, Invincible, which topped the charts for 2 straight weeks after its release in 2006.

Now, in today’s fragile economic times, he continues to respond to the need for a motivating hero who knows what it’s like to battle and overcome adversity. He is regarded as one of the top motivational speakers. Vince and Janet are currently working on their third book, “Born To Be Invincible”.


Speech Topics

LEADERSHIP The “Papale Playbook”

In Vince’s energetic, enthusiastic, and passionate style, listeners get glimpses of what it took to go from a season ticket holder to Captain of an NFL Team. He shares his Leadership Playbook with his audience as well as telling stories about the people that impacted him, from some of sports coaching greats to his mentors. He took the opportunity of a lifetime and ran with it… lifting a team looking for a leader and a city starving for a hero. From the bleachers, as a 10 year season ticket holder to the Captain of an NFL Team, Vince relates how it was done with his Papale Playbook and how you can lead others to take it to the next level.

MOTIVATION “Hold Fast to Dreams”

Going from being called a loser with no pedigree and no college football experience to Captain of an NFL Team is the stuff that dreams, and movies, are made. Using video clips from Invincible, Disney, and ESPN, Vince, a tremendous story teller, shares his tips on seizing opportunities, overcoming odds, fulfilling potential and taking it to the highest level. His energy, passion and humor will keep the audience on the edge of their seats. He made 2nd effort a part of his personality and got the ultimate last laugh on those who doubted him. He will bring people from tears of sadness to tears of joy and bring them to their feet as they feel his journey is their trip as well

TEAMBUILDING “Make Your Teams Special”

From Team Building to the morphing of Mark Wahlberg, from a Hollywood to an NFL star, what does it take to get your team to the next level? Not only was Vince an accomplished athlete he was also a successful teacher and coach and he shares with you his training tips for reaching one’s full potential. What does it take to inspire your Team to pay the price to make their goals and dreams come true? Let Vince inspire and train your group to achieve heights never reached before. Strap on your helmet, get your game face on, and get ready for the experience of a lifetime.

HEALTH & WELLNESS “From Invisible to Invincible”

One of the biggest hits Vince took was when he found out he had colon cancer. Now “green and clean,” he raptures audiences with his story of his emotional journey on the road to recovery. He also shares with us his having to deal with mental illness in his family when he was a youngster and provides some coping tips. Now a spokesperson for cancer awareness, he wows audiences with his understanding, compassion, and humor when dealing with these life obstacles. From caregiver, to patient, to survivor you will feel ready to tackle any challenge after hearing Vince speak about one of his most passionate causes.

EDUCATION & HIGHER LEARNING “Educate Yourself Into the Endzone”

The untold story in Invincible is that Vince was a full-time teacher and coach at his high school alma mater, working on his master’s degree, when he chased his wildest dream. Vince skillfully weaves his amazing story, with a nice blend of humor and passion, sharing his playbook for success mixing in education as the main ingredient. He relates his “Bucket of Crabs” story of how many of his peers were rooting against him to succeed and how, if it weren’t for his teacher, coach and mentor, he never would have made it. He shows the way for his audience to grasp that “the more you learn the more you earn!”

"Hold Fast to Dreams"

"The Last Laugh?from the cheap seats to the sidelines"

"POTENTIAL?from waste to fulfillment"


Invincible: It’s Never to Late to Achieve Your Goals

My Journey from Fan to NFL Team Captain

Winning My Battle with Cancer


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