No one can really fill Von Miller’s shoes, but a 12-year-old boy named TJ sure played the part of the NFL superstar and Super Bowl 50 MVP nicely.
TJ, who battles cystic fibrosis every day, yet plays tight end for his football team, was flown from Maine to Colorado by the Denver Broncos, so he could spend the day doing exactly what his favorite player does.
With the help of the Make-A-Wish Foundation, TJ and his family started the day by eating the same meal that Miller eats most days: scrambled eggs, turkey bacon and hash browns. The boy even had some fans stop by his booth for autographs before he and his family piled into a car selected by Miller.
Then it was off to Broncos headquarters, where TJ not only got a tour of the facility but had his own locker right next to Miller’s, stocked with Broncos apparel, including a customized jersey.
He even got a guided tour of the Broncos weight room from head strength and conditioning coach Loren Landow.
Once practice started, TJ was on the sidelines for every bit of it, and was given the opportunity to meet former head coach and current senior personnel advisor Gary Kubiak, Broncos alum Rod Smith and current head coach Vance Joseph. He also tossed the ball around with wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders.
After practice was over, TJ met his football hero.
“I saw ’58’ and he was really good,” the boy said as he explained why developed a liking for the linebacker in the first place. Then he added, “I like how he’s doing that vision for the kids,” referring to Von’s Vision Foundation, which provides “low-income Denver children with the eye care and corrective eyewear they need to be their best in the classroom and in life.”
☝ of the things TJ admires about @VonMiller?
His work with @VonsVision58.
(We do too, TJ!) 🤓
— Broncos Off Field (@BroncosOffField) September 30, 2018
Here’s a nice look at TJ’s day courtesy of the Broncos: