On Sunday, two professional football teams will play for a chance to win the 2019 Super Bowl. The game is in Atlanta, and neither one of the teams are the San Francisco 49ers or Oakland Raiders, but there are many strong ties to Northern California is this year’s big game.
For the strongest NorCal ties, you needn’t look any further than the two star quarterbacks – Tom Brady and Jared Goff. While the two couldn’t be further apart in age, they both grew up in the Bay Area. Brady hails from San Mateo and Goff grew up on the other side of the San Francisco Bay in Marin. And while Brady headed all the way to Michigan to play college football, Goff cut his teeth down the street at University of California, Berkeley.
Even though they’ll receive most of the spotlight during the big game, the quarterbacks aren’t the only players from NorCal. Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman is from Redwood City, Rams running back C.J. Anderson is from Vallejo, Rams cornerback Marcus Peters is from Oakland and Rams defensive end Ethan Westbrooks is from Elk Grove.
“Being from Northern California, I think there is always, you know you follow those guys,” Brady said at Thursday’s Super Bowl press conference. “I watched CJ for a while. Obviously, I knew Jared’s background. Marcus from Oakland and Jules and I feel like we are brothers in a way. A lot of great memories from growing up in that area.”
“It’s pretty cool,” he continued. “I think NorCal is represented pretty well in this Super Bowl.”
Another link in the Northern California chain is Ram’s Head Coach Sean McVay, who’s grandfather, John McVay, was the San Francisco 49ers General Manager attributed with the construction of the teams that won five Super Bowls in the 80’s and 90’s. Sean’s specialty lies within getting the best out of his quarterbacks, and he’s going to have a show watching the two NorCal QB’s go head-to-head on Sunday.
Many have attributed the shared “laid-back” nature of Goff and Brady to their NorCal upbringings, but their professional careers couldn’t have been more different. Brady is well-known to be a 6th round “underdog” who went on to win five Super Bowls, including his first season as a starter for the Patriots in 2001. Meanwhile, Goff was the top overall pick for the Rams and is now playing in his first Super Bowl after losing his first seven games for the franchise during his rookie in 2016.
Now, they will share the field to play for the sport’s highest achievement – the Super Bowl. When Brady won his first Super Bowl, Goff was six years old.
Whether your rooting for the Rams or the Patriots, take solace in the fact that either team will bring home the trophy to Northern California. Happy Super Bowl Sunday!