Tennessee Titans offensive lineman Ben Jones made the rounds on Twitter Sunday night when he walked out onto Lambeau Field barefoot, despite the fact the playing surface was covered in snow. Many people thought he may have just been trying to be tough or get himself ready for what's sure to be a game dealing with the elements, but the real backstory is actually much deeper than that.
Sparta Live — Jones talked about his pre-game ritual - one he has had since his high school playing days.
“I walk around the field barefoot and listen to gospel music,” he said, and told Burchett the first time he performed the now-habitual routine, his brother, who was a quarterback in high school, had a great game, and they won. Now, Jones uses the routine to honor his brother as well as prepare mentally for the game ahead of him.
Jones apparently does this every game, regardless of the conditions, as a nod to this brother Clay dating back to when he was in high school. The two brothers lost their father in a helicopter crash when Ben was just 10 years old, in addition to several other tragic happenings in Ben's life.
So no, he wasn't just trying to look tough or anything like that. Jones always walks out onto the field barefoot come hell or high water to take a minute to think and continue a tradition his brother started many years ago. It's awesome to see something that started so humbly remain a tradition between brothers even with several inches of snow at Lambeau Field before a Sunday Night Football game.
I hope Jones has an awesome game tonight and is in the running for Football Guy of the Week come Monday morning. Go Titans.