When the Atlanta Falcons beat the Green Bay Packers for the NFC Championship and a second-ever franchise visit to the Super Bowl, North Springs Junior Jared Hopkins made a commitment. Hopkins had been a Falcons fan for as long as he could remember and vowed to support his team in Houston no matter the cost. Thus began a journey of begging, bargaining, and constantly refreshing VividSeats.com to find the next best ticket prices. Needless to say, when Jared’s parents surprised him and his brothers with a weekend trip to Houston and tickets to the Super Bowl, he was ecstatic. “When my parents called me downstairs, I knew something was up. Then my mom showed us a picture of NRG Stadium and my brothers and I went crazy,” Jared said. Take a look below as we follow Hopkins through his adventures in Houston, and ultimately, Super Bowl LI!
Saturday, February 4th:
1:57 PM- Jared sat in the airport in his favorite Falcons jersey. After a week of school and keeping busy with mindless activities, he was finally on his way to Houston!!
6:58 PM- Jared, his two youngers brothers Will and Scott, and his dad enjoy some Texas barbecue the night before the big game. Check out all that Falcons gear!
Sunday, February 5th:
11:59 AM- The Hopkins’ have made it to NRG Stadium!
Since the game only started at 6:30, they had an amazing opportunity to explore the Super Bowl Plaza. “The plaza before the game was an unreal scene filled with fun. I got to kick a field goal, meet up with friends, and see NFL players such as Dak Prescott and Luke Kuechly speak,” Jared said.
2:19 PM- “Seeing the Lombardi trophy that would be given to the winners before the game was surreal, as it is the holy grail of the sports world…and I truly believed it would finally make its way to Atlanta. The memory of them bringing the trophy out onto the sideline next to the Falcons when we were on defense during our collapse gave me an eerie feeling, and it will forever haunt me.”
5:30 PM- “The seats were incredible, they were section 523 which is in the second bowl. Speaking of seats, it will forever haunt me that the kid and his father next to my family left early (they had to be in El Paso the next morning) when we were up big. The kid said “congrats” and all I said was something along the lines of “I hope so”.
7:20 PM- “Lady Gaga was amazing in person, it was definitely one of the coolest performances I’ll ever see…as the Super Bowl halftime show is a huge deal. My favorite part was definitely “Just Dance”, as that used to be my favorite song. Once again, a memory will haunt me…my dad explaining to my mom that the Super Bowl halftime (which is about double the time of a normal one) is bad for teams with leads as it can kill momentum. If only we knew that we were about to witness the biggest choke in sports history and the absolute devastation and heartbreak that would follow.”
End of Sunday: Despite an ugly loss, Jared and his family are hopeful for the Falcons’ future in pursuing the Lombardi Trophy. Jared said, “When the day comes that this team wins a Super Bowl, I just hope everyone in this picture is still around to experience it (picture below).” Regardless of the outcome, our thoughts are with Jared and the Hopkins family after their Super Bowl experience, and we can’t wait to see what next year has in store for the Atlanta Falcons! Rise Up!