Coach Taylor's halftime speech was one of the most heart-wrenching parts of the "Friday Night Lights" finale. With his Dillon Panthers down 26-0, Coach reminded his team that when quarterback Jason Street was paralyzed in the first game of the season, everyone wrote them off — but they'd come back to make it to the state championship. Now, down 26-0, even more people had written them off, Coach said, but there were a few who would never give up. As footage of the players' families flashed on the screen, Coach told his team to keep those people in mind when they went back on the field; the game was far from over.
But that speech wasn't the one originally planned for Coach Taylor. The version of the show sent to TV critics before the finale aired had a different speech that was more about the team than the town. The original focuses on the players' need to rely on each other, and it echoes the team's "clear eyes, full hearts, can't lose" motto. Given that Coach had just told the team that he'd be leaving for another coaching job, I think the original speech might have been more appropriate — but if I didn't know that version existed, I would have thought the speech that aired was perfect.
Chicago Tribune TV critic Maureen Ryan has posted a video of the original speech over at her site. Check it out, and then to watch the version that aired, read more