Rob Ween and his mother were strolling his then-4-month-old son, Jake, around the Hofstra University campus during training camp this summer. After purchasing two Brett Favre jerseys at Jets Fest, Mrs. Ween spotted four Jets Flight Crew members and suggested her son ask them for a picture.
"I walked over and said, 'Do you mind if I take a picture with you?' " said Ween. "And they're like 'Yeah, no problem.' And then I'm like 'But wait, let me get my baby.' "
After fawning over little Jake, who had donned his brand new No. 4 jersey, Mandisa, Jen P., Natalie and Liana posed with the guys for August's Show Us Your Green photo.
Residing in West New York, N.J., Ween is a lifelong Jets fan and season ticket holder who lives 15 minutes from the Meadowlands.
"I think our first year was like 1990. Same section, everyone's been going for a while — Section 327."
Rooting for the Jets is a Ween family affair.
"Well, my dad's been a Jets fan, and I guess my mom got into it because we all got into it," he said. "It's sort of like a family thing that we all got into and I actually got my wife into — she never even watched football or knew anything about football, and now she's rattling off the names and stuff. It's impressive. She's now a diehard Jets fan.
"My parents actually travel in from Long Island every game, so we tailgate. They get there at like 9 in the morning and we're there for hours. It's my whole family — my mom, my dad, my sister and me. I love going there every time. It's definitely an experience."
Young Jake is not yet old enough to join in a "J-E-T-S! Jets! Jets! Jets!" chant, so Rob plans on waiting a little longer before bringing his son to the games.
"Maybe next year for Jake's first game," he said. "As soon as he knows what's going on."
A friend suggested to Ween that his winning photo might be put up on the big screen at the Meadowlands. Ween was skeptical but made sure to pack a camera just in case. When they did, he was ready and was able to snap a picture to show Jake when he grows up.
"It was awesome. Everybody in our section was like 'Dude, that's you!' And I'm like 'I know.'
Ween, reflecting on the Jets' 1998 season, said, "With Vinny and Keyshawn and Curtis, I really thought we were going to the Super Bowl that year. I mean, we were one half away. I just felt like that was the year"
But the Jets are on a roll in 2008 and Ween and family are once again optimistic.
"You can't go wrong with the greatest player of all time," Rob said, referring of course to Favre. "I think our division is wide open. I ran out and got my jersey right away, so I'm on the bandwagon."