A 12-year-old Oklahoma boy received a delightfully unexpected note from Carolina Panthers owner Jerry Richardson last weekend. Richardson responded after the boy sent letters to every NFL owner asking which team he should root for. The personal note may have made the boy a Panthers fan for life.
Cade Pope set himself on a mission to find the NFL team he should devote himself to and so sent letters out to every NFL team owner asking for his advice on the matter. In his letters the boy asked each owner to explain to him why he should become a fan of their team. Cade asked the owners why he should “chose your team to become my team?”
As KWTV Channel 9 pointed out, in his hunt for a new team to root for, Cade is a “free agent.” Despite all the letters he sent out, though, only one NFL owner responded to the boy’s query. And Jerry Richardson’s reply was more than just a quick note.
Richardson did include a handwritten return note, which read in part, “Cade, we would be honored if our Carolina Panthers became your team,” and went on to say, “We would make you proud by the classy way we represent you.”
But Richardson, the only NFL owner to actually play in the NFL since the Chicago Bears’ George Halas, not only took the time to send the boy the encouraging note, he also sent Caleb a replica team helmet signed by All-Pro linebacker Luke Kuechly.
The personal touch delighted the boy.
“If this is the only team that responds to me,” the boy told the media. “I’m a Carolina panthers fan.”
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston or email the author at email@example.com