Nine-year-old Thomas Brown lives in Virginia Beach, but as a military kid, he has found himself moving around quite a bit. Brown’s father, Shannon, is a lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Marine Corps who flies FA-18 fighter jets. Although currently stationed locally, Thomas still maintains his Steelers fandom, and entered the NFL’s Play 60 Super Kid Super Bowl Contest with the hopes of getting to meet his favorite player, Troy Polamalu.
Brown pledged to be active for 60 minutes a day, and gave his answers to the following questions:
— If you could tell your favorite team what healthy foods they needed to eat, what would you suggest and why?
— What do you think your favorite player does to stay fit?
— Who is your favorite player on your local NFL team, and how does he inspire you to PLAY 60?
A release from the NFL explained more about Brown and the answers that helped him become this year’s “Play 60 Super Kid.”
Brown, 9, is a competitive swimmer who specializes in the backstroke, and a Cub Scout who enjoys surfing. In his contest essay, he provided some healthy-eating advice for Polamalu and his teammates, writing “I would tell them to eat healthy foods that are not artificial. Eat veggies, lots of protein to build muscles, and stay away from junk food. It will also make your hair shinier, especially Troy. I think they should do this because I tried it and it has made me a better player on the field and a better student in the classroom.”
Brown was brought to Pittsburgh and surprised with a dinner with Polamalu on Monday night at Jerome Bettis Grille 36, which is where these adorable photos come from. Today he’ll be touring the Steelers facility and he’ll also get to spend Super Bowl week being a kid celebrity, participating in a number of events the NFL has set up for young fans.