Baltimore's Michael Phelps and his mother, Debbie, at the 2008 Summer Olympics
The saying is "Behind every great man is a strong woman." In the NFL, it's very fair to say, "behind every successful NFL player is a strong mother." This also holds true for athletes in any sport, such as swimming's Michael Phelps of Baltimore, the most decorated athlete in Olympic history, shown in the photo above with his mommy, Debbie.
On Mother's Day, this is more apparent than any other time of the year. NFL.com put up a story with photographs of well-known NFL players. The Baltimore Ravens are represented by Ray Lewis, who is photographed with his mom, Sunseria Jenkins, back in 2011, together distributing turkeys in Baltimore for Thanksgiving.
So when you watch your favorite players on the gridiron, slamming opponents to the ground and throwing their bodies around with reckless abandon, remember that they couldn't have done it without their mother's permission in the first place!