Should a successful salesman working directly with customers be compensated even more than his store manager? The manager has far superior education and management skills than a mere recently graduated college student who just so happens to connect well with consumers. Does a professional, talented lineman in football deserve more compensation than a superb quarterback? This week's Torah portion of Eikev answers this question.

This week's Torah portion of Eikev literally means heel and according to our tradition, in some ways, a heel is superior to the brain because it is the heel that executes the will of the brain. The previous Lubavitcher Rebbe of blessed memory once wrote of how, in many ways, the function of the foot soldier is superior to that of the commanding officer. Regardless of how many well-deserved medals might be pinned on the chest of the general – as essential as his brilliant stewardship of the war and motivational leadership may be – at the end of the day, it’s the power, courage and sacrifice of the foot soldier engaged in hand-to-hand combay; putting his life in harm’s way, fighting side by side with his comrades, who brings the battle to the enemy.  Beyond all of the thinking, planning and talking, it’s those grunts with their boots on the ground – meeting the adversary face to face – who bring peace and victory to the nation back home.

There, in the trenches, where each lineman functions not as an individual but as part of a unit – locked shoulder to shoulder with his teammates to push forward and overpower the opposition – was where the seemingly insignificant heel is directly responsible for the team’s victory.

The team leaders and sparkling playmakers might capture the lion’s share of the headlines and glory, but it’s those bold and brawny guys locking helmets in the thickest part of the battlefield that, more often than not, seal the fate of the game. Few of them ever cross into the end zone, but those linemen – whose names you barely know – are the unsung heroes who deserve to hold that trophy highest.

This football analogy – serves as a metaphor for virtually all of life’s challenges and “battles”.  Any accomplished CEO worth his salt will acknowledge that, for all of his mastery of corporate strategy and financial management, the true credit for the company’s success belongs to those dogged and determined salesmen who are out in the field, at the “customer touch points”, closing those deals.  If they don’t make the sales, there’s no production for executives to oversee; no finances for presidents to manage.

And so our generation, which isn’t as Jewishly scholastic and spiritually pious as previous generations in a certain way is superior to our saintly ancestors.  We are the ones that take their great inspiration and bring their dreams into actualization.