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Los Angeles Rams wide receiver and reigning Super Bowl MVP Cooper Kupp is enjoying the final weeks of the NFL offseason with his wife and two children.
The 28-year-old, who signed on for a Zoom call from his Los Angeles home wearing a Dodgers baseball cap and a gray shirt, told PEOPLE that his wife, Anna Marie Kupp, has been “an absolute warrior” for their family.
“The things she allows me to do to pursue being the best version of me as a football player could not be done without her,” Kupp says of his high school sweetheart, who he married in 2015.
Since the Rams’ victory over the Cinncinatti Bengals at Super Bowl LVI, Kupp says he has prioritized taking on some of the responsibilities that Anna typically handles during the arduous football season.
“It’s about finding balance in the offseason and being able to take some of those responsibilities back too,” he says of the duties, primarily school pickups and other morning chores with their sons, Cooper Jameson, 3, and Cypress Stellar, 1.
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“I go in very early in the season and my wife then is taking the brunt of the mornings,” Kupp explains. “Every morning, she’s got the boys and it’s not like I’m just sleeping in, I’m at work, but she’s still got to take that stuff on.”
Kupp also says life in the NFL is uniquely demanding for players and their families.
“It’s very hard to find people who are in the NFL who get it,” he explains. “It’s just a very hard thing to understand if you’re not in it.”
That’s what makes his friendship with Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford even more invaluable.
“Everyone wants to talk about the connection in terms of on the field, the football side of things, but that doesn’t happen without [the friendship],” Kupp says.
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“It’s so important just as people to be able to connect and understand each other and we’re at a very similar stage of life,” Kupp said before joking, “aside from the fact that he’s 57 years old.”
Stafford, 34, joined the Rams in January 2021 after spending his entire career with the Detroit Lions. He and Kupp have grown close during their time on the Rams, largely due to their uniquely similar lifestyles.
“We understand each other and there are a lot of things that we’re going through in the season that’s very similar that we can connect on,” Kupp says.
Anthony Behar/Fox Sports/PictureGroup/Shutterstock, Aaron J. Thornton/Getty Images Cooper Kupp, Anna Marie Kupp, Matthew Stafford, Kelly Stafford
That connection is strong between the NFL stars’ wives, too, and Kupp said Kelly Stafford and Anna “get along so well.”
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“They’ve got four kids and [their kids are] almost the same ages as our two, which is crazy that they’ve got so many kids in such a short amount of time. They’re absolutely nuts for doing that,” Kupp says while laughing.
“But there’s a lot of things that we’re going through in the season of life that’s very similar we can connect on, that we understand each other,” Kupp adds. “It’s just been so much fun for us as a group, our families being able to be together, how our kids get along. It’s just been a lot of fun as a group being able to have that dynamic. It’s very special for Anna and I.”
Kupp and Stafford’s Rams will open the 2022-23 NFL season taking on Josh Allen and the Buffalo Bills on Sept. 8.