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Tennessee C Cooper Mays has two reasons to root for the Chiefs on Sunday

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Tennessee center Cooper Mays isn’t one to sit around for hours on end watching football. He’d prefer to be playing it. However, he doesn’t miss an opportunity to see his former teammates succeed in the NFL when it happens upon the television.

None of Mays’ teammates have had any more success in such a short time in the NFL as Kansas City Chiefs’ offensive guard Trey Smith. Considered one of the top young offensive linemen in the NFL, he was named to the Pro Football Writers Association All-Rookie team in 2001, has already won one Super Bowl and will have a chance to win another when the Chiefs play the San Francisco 49ers in the Super Bowl on Sunday. 

It’s been an amazing journey for Smith, who slipped to the sixth round in the NFL Draft after blood clots prompted serious health concerns and sidelined Smith at least twice with associated symptoms. Now, Smith is able to reap the benefit of his hard work.

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“I think he fully, fully appreciates it,” Mays said. “I’m sure he’s taking full advantage of it and not taking it for granted at all.”

Neither is receiver Jauan Jennings, whose career was hampered considerably by unwise management by the coaching staff in charge at the time. Jennings has gone on to be a solid receiver in the NFL, which is somewhat bittersweet for Tennessee fans considering he could have certainly done much more in college under better circumstances.

Neither Smith nor Jennings had the perfect college path to the Super Bowl. However, both will be in Las Vegas on Sunday to play on the biggest stage in American sports. Even Mays doesn’t have to be a diehard NFL fan to see that.

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