Our favorite Packer heroes didn’t even wear shoulder pads

Of all the heroes who made their way into Lambeau Field last night, our favorites were the earnest fellows whose sweatshirts flapped open in the cold night air.

We like the little guys in the green and gold jerseys, happy enough to sport them in Green Bay, brave enough to wear them on their home turf in Chicago.

My nephews, Ben and Sam, celebrated their seventh and ninth birthdays this weekend with a quick trip north and we were lucky enough to tailgate with them for a while.

They spent most of their pre-game time (three hours thanks to a punctual uncle!) running routes through accommodating tailgaters.

“I’m going to run deep and then slant toward you,” said Ben, a first grader who graciously allowed me to toss him a few.

The Packers set a few records in their big, blowout win Monday night against the Bears. Even the cheese-grater-wearing Chicago fans we sat next to had to hand it to Aaron Rodgers and his merry band of cohorts.

But I also like football at its purest level, the kind where little kids with big eyes and bigger dreams run routes through grills and around cars, again, and again and again.

Thanks to our beloved Packers and two charming nephews, we cheered on both kinds of players Monday night.

I can’t think of a more satisfactory evening under the Lambeau lights.

Go Pack Go!

He rarely stands still (except to play poker), but this is a shot of my nephew Ben, a brand new seven-year old who is brave enough to wear this get-up on a cold night at Lambeau and on a regular school day in Chicago.
Ben runninng a route
You have to move fast to keep up with him.
Ben and Sam
Delighted to find themselves tailgating in the shadow of Lambeau Field, Ben and Sam passed the time running routes and playing defense. Check back in a dozen years or so and they may be warming up exactly the same way inside the stadium.
Ban Sam and Me
We took a quick hot chocolate break and got back to work.
Ben, Sam and the mountain dew
These are the kind of faces you want to see when you’re getting ready for a big game.
But these are the faces my sister Kathy and I saw in Section 117. Fortunately, they were humbled early and turned out to be very nice guys. Cheese graters indeed!
Thank you military
Thank you Military.
ben sam and their parents
They had a four a.m. wake up call today, but it was worth it to enjoy the excitement of an evening game at Lambeau.

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