Girl who's bullied at school for playing football gets Super Bowl tickets from Patriots
If you're a New England Patriots fan, you're probably feeling on top of the world right now.
If you're not, then you can join the rest of us in thinking that they're getting a little too smug thanks to all those recent victories under their belts. (I mean, seriously guys, would it be so difficult to let someone else win for a change?)
But, all loyalties aside for a second, it has to be acknowledged that the Patriots are an insanely talented team, and - as it turns out - a pretty sweet one, too.
Last week, the team posted a video showing wide receiver Julian Edelman sticking up for a fellow football player and Patriots fan, Dejah Rondeau.
Rondeau, a seventh grader from New Hampshire, had been bullied at school due to her participation in the school's football team. She plays for the Exeter Seahawks, and is one of just three girls playing the sport in her area.
In a show of support, then, the Patriots invited the girl to have a look around their trophy room at the Gillette Stadium.
"I heard about your story, about going out there and having a challenge, of dealing with adversity because people not accepting this, that," Edelman told Rondeau. "My respect level for you is just through the roof because you just ignored all the noise and you played the game we all love and that’s football."
This meant the world to the young sportsperson, who actually wears number 11 in honour of Edelman - her favourite player.
Rondeau got to meet Robert Kraft, the team's owner, then play a little catch with Edelman, and - best of all - she received two tickets to watch her heroes play yesterday.
"I'm bringing you to the Super Bowl, if that's cool," the wide receiver said. "Do you have any plans next Sunday? No?"
The seventh grader was absolutely delighted by the surprise, and could barely get her words out without stammering from the shock.
"That was crazy, I never knew that would happen," she said. "I'm just really excited to go."
And, of course, we know now that she must have had an amazing time, as her team won! More than that, though, Rondeau received a wave of support from her fellow Pats fans.
"As Edelman would say, what a great story! Jules is such a great person, on and off the field," wrote one person on Twitter. "He's in touch with his society, our society, and I really appreciate this quality that he demonstrates time and again. Go Dejah! Go Jules! Go Pats!"
"Awesome of Julian and Mr. Kraft to do that! No one should be bullied, ever! Way to go
#JE11 #Patriots," said another.
So, congratulations to the Patriots for their win this weekend, and a big thank you as well for their support of fans like Rondeau.