Superbowl 2017 | 6 Adoptee Football Players

Here’s a brief snapshot of six adopted football players.

Tom Andriola February 02, 2017

It has always been interesting to me to read about famous adoptees or adoptive parents. What were their lives like? Did they experience some of the same things that I did as an adoptee? What I have come to find out is really not all that surprising: they are human, just like you and me. Here’s a brief snapshot of six adopted football players as we approach this year’s Superbowl.

Colin Kaepernick
1. Colin Kaepernick

Colin Kaepernick is currently the starting quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers, first joining the team in 2011. Born in 1987 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, he was adopted when he was only a few weeks old by Rick and Teresa Kaepernick. Recently, Colin has been surrounded by controversy regarding his decision not to stand for the National Anthem as a political statement. His biological mother chose to weigh in on the matter, indicating that she disagrees with it.

Michael Oher
2. Michael Oher

Michael Oher is an offensive tackle for the Carolina Panthers. Oher had a difficult upbringing. His mother was an alcoholic and crack addict, and his father was in and out of prison. At the age of seven, he was placed in foster care, and was eventually adopted in 2004 by a couple that had a daughter and son attending the same high school. Oher entered the NFL in 2009 and played for the Baltimore Ravens and Tennessee Titans before signing with the Panthers in 2015.

Daunte Culpepper
3. Daunte Culpepper

Daunte Culpepper is best known as the former quarterback for the Minnesota Vikings, but also played for the Miami Dolphins, Oakland Raiders, and Detroit Lions during his NFL career, which started in 1999 and ended in 2009. Culpepper’s biological mother was serving time for armed robbery while she was pregnant with him. When he was one day old, a woman who worked in the correctional facility where his mother was held, adopted Culpepper and he was raised as one of more than fifteen children.

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Eric Dickerson
4. Eric Dickerson

Eric Dickerson was a running back for the Los Angeles Rams, Indianapolis Colts, Los Angeles Raiders, and Atlanta Falcons between 1983 and 1993. His biological mother was a teenager when Dickerson was born, and his great-great aunt adopted him. While he was growing up, he was told that his biological mother was his sister. She lived right next door.

Tim Green
5. Tim Green

Tim Green was a linebacker and defensive end for the Atlanta Falcons from 1986 to 1993, and is now a best-selling author of books for both school age kids and adults. Green was raised in a loving and supporting family, but as an adoptee, longed to find his biological mother. “A Man and His Mother” is the story of his search and its impact on him.

Scott Fujita
6. Scott Fujita

Scott Fujita was a linebacker for the Kansas City Chiefs, Dallas Cowboys, New Orleans Saints, and Cleveland Browns. His NFL career spanned from 2002 to 2012. His birth mother placed him for adoption when Scott was six weeks old. While he is not biologically Japanese, he was adopted as an infant into a traditional Japanese household, celebrating Japanese festivals and holidays. His adoptive father is a Japanese-American who was born inside an Arizona interment camp during World War II.

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Tom Andriola

Tom Andriola advocates for adoptee rights and shares his personal experiences about being adopted and his successful, independent search for both biological parents. To see more of his writing, visit Tom's Facebook page.


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