CINCINNATI — Bengals fans are flocking to Nashville ahead of the showdown with the Tennessee Titans. Because of the close proximity, a lot of fans are waiting until Saturday morning to make the trip.
Natalie Armenta and her family are part of that Saturday crew. Natalie said they have a hotel right across from Nissan Stadium, so they’ll be right in the action when they arrive.
Armenta's love for the Bengals dates back to when she saw the 1989 Super Bowl at 7. She and her family have been season ticket holders since 2015, never missing a game, but this season is different. Her son, Mateo, is watching Sam Hubbard closely. He’s a role model for the Moeller freshman who is in some ways following in Hubbard’s footsteps.
The family said it is a pretty big deal to be cheering on a local guy who still cares so deeply for his alma mater.
"It's really inspiring to me,” Mateo said. “It's really cool to see a dude like Sam Hubbard just come through the same school and make the NFL and I feel like I have an opportunity to do that as well because of him."
The trip is not cheap compared to the $45 tickets Armenta scored for the first playoff game at Paul Brown Stadium — the family paid $300 each for tickets on TicketMaster. Still, Armenta said it is worth it, and she hopes to be taking her son to playoff games for years to come.