Brendan and Sean got fascinated with football several years ago. With Brendan, the interest is mostly intellectual and fact-gathering. He reads everything he can get his hands on, memorizes statistics, and pores over the sports page in the newspaper. He can talk sportcaster language and is familiar with most of the major players past and present in the NFL and AFL.
Sean started with a more practical interest. He got interested in the Green Bay Packers and especially Brett Favre. I remember him asking his uncle, my brother, on a visit, "Who's your 17th favorite football team?" He passed the football with his older brother Liam and asked me many times if there was some way he could play.
Last year we found out there was a Pop Warner football league in our area and came close to signing him up, but for one thing, all the driving was a factor and for another thing, the sign-up was the weekend we were gone camping and there was no contact info so I didn't know how to get him enrolled.
Meanwhile he and Brendan read many bios of football legends and stories of the Superbowl, watched football games, and started up their BFL (Bionicle Football League) which is still thriving today with complicated pages of player statistics, play-offs etc..
Oh yeah, and I forgot the gamecube games Madden Football 2002 and 2005, and Backyard Football. They've spent hours and hours on those.
This summer we were able to get Sean into football camp and football. He is a winner on there.... it allows him to make a significant difference on the team and be on the "special" team as a wide receiver and free safety/cornerback. We are all going to his games and practices and enjoying it. He had his first game last week -- Kevin taped it and we watched it a couple of times. Sean made an 80 yard punt return and also as safety brought down a ball carrier only about 10 yards from the goal.
Brendan visits the Patriots website or the NFL web site a couple of times a week and continues to check out whatever library books he can find. I'm thinking of how to get him some football magazines.
The reason I am writing this is bcause today they have spent almost all day getting out their "animals" (all the little resin and vinyl type creatures we have around the house) and playing at football -- not just S and B but also Clare and Kieron. I can hear them adding "down-ups" (what the coach makes Sean's team do when they make a mistake) and talking football language. Kieron just came and showed me a baby hammerhead shark. "This is the quarterback of the team. Want to know why?" He brings out an adult hammerhead. "This is the coach!"