Brandin Cooks, Patriots Wide Receiver and Stockton Native, Heads to Super Bowl LII

STOCKTON -- People in Stockton are getting excited for the Super Bowl this weekend.

That's because one of their own, New England Patriots wide receiver Brandin Cooks, figures to play a prominent role in the big game.

"You know, it's one of those things that movies are made of. I think every young child in this city should take a close look at what happens on Sunday and watch Brandin, and get to know Brandin's story," said Brian Gray, Cooks' high school coach.

Gray figures predominantly in Cooks’ story. He not only coached Cooks at Lincoln High School in Stockton, but the two remained close over the years and share an almost father-son relationship, keeping in touch usually a couple of times per week.

"A lot of times it's, you know, how he felt he did that game, and sometimes it's about life," Gray said. "Sometimes it's about our faith and what not. The conversations kind of have a wide range."

But, make no mistake, the conversations lately have centered around Cooks first season with the Patriots and, of course, playing in the biggest football game of them all, the Super Bowl.

"Clearly he's got to be a big part of what is going on in terms of whether he's going to get that many catches, or because the defense is going to focus on his ability to push the top, but he'll definitely be a big part of the game plan," Gray said.

"As a player, that's what you hope for, let alone you're coming to an organization that is known for going," Cooks said to the press. "But the first thing that popped into my head was really how blessed I was being part of an organization like this.

Without question, Cooks is one of the top receivers in the game today.

Even during his high school years in Stockton, which included frequent stops at David's Pizza, a local hangout for kids, most knew greatness was coming.

"He was destined for something beyond high school football," said David Calder, the restaurant's owner. "It's good to see a local kid doing well in the NFL, and hopefully they can pull it off on Sunday."

"I think it will be one of those things that he will love the taste of, and he will probably want another, and another and another," Gray said.

Of course we don't know yet how Cooks and the New England Patriots will do in Super Bowl LII on Sunday. But one thing is for certain, come July, Cooks will be in Stockton offering kids a free football camp, just as he does every year. Wouldn't it be something if he could bring the Vince Lombardi Trophy with him?