Beyond sex tape scandals there
There’s plenty of negative headlines around football players – particularly in rugby league at the moment – but they often obscure the fact most of the players are normal, decent members of society and family men. Here’s some evidence of that fact from their Instagram feeds…
The Wests Tigers wizard – now in the twilight of his career – and wife Zoe welcomed son Benjamin into the world last year and man, he is the cutest. Benji is clearly a besotted father, often posting shots to Insta with accompanying text about, yeah, what a besotted father he is. Too cute.
While brother Sam has had a few hiccups on the family front, younger brother George is busy building a next generation for the South Sydney Rabbitohs with partner Joanna King. Last year they welcomed a baby girl, Birdie, to join then one-year-old son Boston, a couple of tousle-haired blondies who man-mountain George endlessly dotes on in his posts.
The former Sharks and Tigers enforcer may look fearsome but if his socials are anything to go by, he’s one of the biggest softies in the game. His little girl Aspen, in particular, is the apple of daddy’s eye and big Keith has her and older brother’s Kingston’s names tattooed on his ginormous frame. One passionate dad.
The freshly retired superstar will have more time to spend with his kids Tyla Rose and Jake, who joined their dad a number of times on field last season as he commemorated more than one milestone and farewell, including the rare feat of 300 first-grade games. Billy famously revealed himself as a regular participant in Barbie games with his daughter a couple of years back.
Another man with a reputation as a fierce and intimidating competitor on the field but in the family domain, another total softie. His Insta bio says it all: “Proud father & husband!”. With wife Chelsea he has two young girls, Zali and one-year-old Harper. The Roosters and Kiwis frontrower has previously expressed a desire to eventually have five kids: “I just told the boys this morning that I want to be that father who drives in a little mini-bus and goes and drops all the kids off at school,” he told The Beast in 2016.
With childhood sweetheart Lauren, the Hawks great (now seeing out his career as the Brisbane Lions) has three sons, Cooper, Chase and Leo. And he is a pretty committed dad, joining in everything from Halloween dressing up to bedtime reads befitting a natural leader considered one of AFL’s ornaments.
Another great Hawk, Burgoyne is a footy dad of four with two girls, Nixie and Leni, and two boys, Ky and Percy, with wife Amy. Four premierships, 18 years as an elite AFL player and the demands of four kids – that’s some achievement for a shy kid from Darwin. “Before I had kids, I was very structured, my routine was very intact when I had it,” Burgoyne told The Age last year. “You have kids and it just goes all out the window to a certain extent …That’s just the way it is.”
The former Brisbane Lions hardman has become a popular commentator on the game while spending more time post-footy career with his children Jack, Macy and Olivia. Thank god his kids never have to watch Brown’s take-no-prisoners style of playing again, which saw him knocked out and opened up more than once during his illustrious career.
One of the modern-day superstars of the AFL, the Cats star is a doting footy dad to George, his first child, in 2017. One of the game’s noted humourists, “Danger” often shares funny Insta posts of family life, including one last year with baby in the bed between him and wife Mardi and the caption, “Who said kids spoil the ‘magic’.” Can’t argue there, Paddy.