Ideally, if you're a pro tennis player, you're playing in a final on a Sunday afternoon. It might be kind of hard to concentrate if your favorite NFL team is in action that day. Here's a look at tennis' own "gridiron gang."
Brad Gilbert, Oakland Raiders
Gilbert is a fan of every sport out there, with particular devotion to the Bay Area teams. The proud member of “Raider Nation” is right there with his team, through the good and bad, which there’s been a lot of in recent years. This season, though, looks to be the start of something big for the Black and Silver. Gilbert is there to provide a running commentary online every game, running the gamut of emotions, like after the team’s win last week:
Insane no penalty and the @RAIDERS win the ball game, I completely am spent and feel like I have bee through 3 dryer cycles— Brad Gilbert (@bgtennisnation) October 30, 2016
John Isner, Carolina Panthers
Watching football is one of his favorite pastimes, with his college allegiance going toward his alma mater, the University of Georgia, and his pro leanings toward the Carolina Panthers. Isner’s a die-hard fan, and has gotten some up-close viewings in the past:
Bethanie Mattek-Sands, Green Bay Packers
Mattek-Sands bills herself as a “Cheesehead 4 Life” in her Twitter bio, letting anyone and everyone know where her loyalties lie. Such super-fandom can even get you attention from the object of your affections, especially after a major accomplishment:
Ryan Harrison, New Orleans Saints
The Louisiana native has nothing but love for the 2009 Super Bowl champions. The season opener this year had him raring to go (and start the trash talk with Isner):
The Saints let Harrison know he’s always welcome:
@ryanharrison92 hope to see ya at a game Ryan!— New Orleans Saints (@Saints) September 8, 2016
CoCo Vandeweghe, San Diego Chargers
California is rife with pro football teams, but for Vandeweghe, supporting the Bolts is the only way to go:
Mardy Fish, Minnesota Vikings
The Minnesota native has watched his team storm to the top of the standings in its division this year, despite injuries to some of its top players.
He’s on top of the franchise’s moves, like when the team made a splash in free agency this past off season, signing offensive tackle Jake Long:
Couldn't be more excited to be a part of the @Vikings organization and this team. Pumped for this opportunity!!— Jake Long (@JakeLong77) October 11, 2016
Mardy welcomed the four-time Pro Bowler with open arms—and an open court:
Free tennis lessons for you Jake! https://t.co/4t95KZsPHv— Mardy Fish (@MardyFish) October 12, 2016
Venus & Serena Williams, Miami Dolphins
When you have part ownership of an NFL franchise, you better believe you’re going to be a fan of said team.