Chris Reis is a loyal follower of Christ, devoted husband and father, philanthropist, Super Bowl champion, NFL player, author, inspirational speaker, and lifelong athlete.
He is best known for his historic, game-changing play made during Super Bowl XLIV, and ultimately helping to lead his (then) team, the New Orleans Saints, to victory.
As the first onside kick recovered before the fourth quarter during a Super Bowl game, NFL.com named Chris’ play one of the “top 10 greatest Super Bowl plays of the decade,” and the actual ball recovered resides in the NFL Hall of Fame.
Chris is a graduate of the Georgia Tech, where he was the president of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes throughout his entire college experience. It was here that Chris met his wife, Michelle. It was also within these walls of fellowship that Chris’ father Mike felt his own calling to surrender his life to Christ.
Passionate about helping others improve their lives, Chris serves on the board of lüō. lüō is a non-profit organization that works on empowering children in impoverished global communities by providing them with sustainable solutions including nutrition, biblical curriculum, education, and medical care. (For more information, please visit www.luo-setfree.org.
Today Chris travels the country speaking to men’s groups, churches and religious organizations, rotary clubs, youth groups, touchdown clubs and corporations, inspiring others by sharing his story of living a faith-based lifestyle in an ego-centric culture. His “Live for More” motto inspires many who may find trusting God in today’s culture to be more and more daunting.
Chris lives in Lafayette, Louisiana with his wife Michelle, daughter Piper, and son Rowan.
On February 7, 2010, trailing 10-6 to the Indianapolis Colts at halftime of Super Bowl XLIV, New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton made one of the gutsiest calls in Super Bowl history when they started the second half with an onside kick called Ambush.
Chris Reis, a back-up safety and special teams player, wasn’t supposed to recover the onside kick, but when the squiggling ball bounced off the chest of a Colts player, Chris pounced on the ball—and held on for everything he was worth. His recovery changed the tenor of the game and propelled the Saints to their first Super Bowl victory—and gave their Hurricane Katrina-weary fans something to cheer about.
Watching the Super Bowl game that day in Miami was Chris’ father, Mike. He needed his own recovery—a recovery from his addiction to alcohol, sex, and a life filled with bad choices and poor decisions.
Mike Reis grew up on the working class streets of Chicago, the son of a boozing father and a teenage mother who struggled with life. Sexually abused and terrorized by his grandmother, Mike and his family moved during his teen years to Atlanta, where he discovered sex at an early age and numbed his emotional pain with alcohol.
An early marriage to a high school sweetheart and the subsequent birth of two sons failed to tame his desire for sexual trysts and all-night drinking escapades. An affair led to the destruction of his first marriage and left two preschool-aged sons without a father in the home.
The younger son was Chris Reis, a two-year-old who didn’t understand why his father had abandoned him, and the distance between father and son remained a chasm as wide as the Grand Canyon during the boy’s younger years.
After his playing days at Georgia Tech, Chris won a spot on the New Orleans Saints roster. After his recovery of the onside kick in Super Bowl XLIV, there was one more recovery that needed to be made in Chris’ family—his father.
Recovery of a Lifetime is a father-and-son book that unpacks the dynamics of family relationships and tells a redeeming story of faith, hope, restoration, and recovery
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