With seconds ticking away in the first half, the Chargers attempted a 58-yard field goal to get points on the board before halftime. Fortunately for Patriots fans, Cody Davis jumped and swatted the ball away, and Devin McCourty took it to the house.
While the special teams play was great in its own right, it meant something even sweeter for McCourty. Before the game, he knew he was going to wind up in the end zone one way or another. He just had a feeling.
As part of the NFL's My Cause, My Cleats initiative, players are encouraged to wear custom cleats to honor something they are passionate about and to raise awareness for an organization of their choice.
McCourty's choice this year is personal. He and his wife, Michelle, lost their third child, Mia, in May. Michelle was eight months pregnant when doctors discovered their baby no longer had a heartbeat. The stillbirth of their daughter is a heartbreaking loss, and McCourty chose an organization that would help other families who have lived through and with this all-consuming grief.
The TEARS Foundation provides compassion and financial help for families who have lost a child, as well as comprehensive services and support groups.
With Mia in his heart and his family watching closely, McCourty just knew he would find his way into the end zone against the Chargers.
"It was crazy. I knew today I was going to score. My Cause, My Cleats, I felt just special today representing the TEARS Foundation for child loss," McCourty said after the game. "Just knowing that my wife would be back home watching and the cleats had rainbows on them, hope and love. I felt like that today. I knew I would find a way to get into the end zone, so she'll be able to see it and the rest of my kids would see that."
As he ran into the end zone, the world could see that reminder of love on his feet, and it's only helped carry him.
You can learn more about the TEARS Foundation here.