New England Patriots' running back BenJarvus Green-Ellis will have his mother in the stands for Super Bowl XLVI in Indianapolis. That's not a huge deal. But what is mind-boggling is all the trips she took to get there.
Green-Ellis began playing competitive football 12 years ago at the high school level in New Orleans before heading off to college at Indiana University and Ole Miss. Then he caught on with the Patriots. During that entire journey, his mom, LaTonia Green, has missed only one game. Now factor in the fact that she's been away from her son, living in Minnesota, for the past 17 years.
Green went off to the University of Minnesota to study while her only son was just in elementary school, but the New Orleans Times-Picayune reports she wouldn't let the distance between them stop her from supporting him.
Traveling into blizzards and small college towns, Green-Ellis' mom missed that single game because of work obligations when his Indiana Hoosiers played a road game at Oregon his freshman season.
She's attended all 56 games of his NFL career in New England.
Green-Ellis was raised mostly by his grandparents while his mom was away getting her education, but he credited his mother for using up all those air miles.
"It’s a good support system to know that she’s always behind me," Green-Ellis told the paper. "We’ve kind of been separated since she moved up to Minnesota when I was in third grade, so for her to always fly back to catch my high school games and all of my college games, it meant a lot to me."
So how has mom felt about zig-zagging her way around the country all these years?
"It’s worth every minute of it," Green told the New Orleans Times-Picayune. "You have motherly instincts. I just felt like somebody had to be at every game. Anything can happen to him. I don’t want to have any regrets. I always want to be there and support him."
The Patriots running back's mom ended up earning double degrees at the University of Minnesota and currently works as the budget director for the city of Minneapolis.
Sunday will be extra special for Green this weekend. Not only will she be in the stands watching her son play in the Super Bowl, she'll be celebrating her 45th birthday.
Can't imagine what kind of gift she'll be hoping for when she blows those candles out.
Popular Stories On ThePostGame:
-- Peyton Manning, Mr. Indiana, Is A Hero And A Ghost During Long-Awaited Super Bowl Week
-- Sister Pact: How Tom Brady's Special Bond With His Sisters Helped Make Him A Star
-- Best Super Bowl Player Bargains
-- High-Priced Super Bowl Rings