Head Coach Kyle Shanahan will lead the San Francisco 49ers as they take on the Kansas City Chiefs at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami, Florida for Super Bowl LIV on Sunday, February 2. This game is projected to be one of the tightest Super Bowl matchups in recent memory, and Shanahan has a lot of weight on his shoulders to pull out a win.
However, the 40-year-old head coach will have a support system that runs deep present for the game. Not only will his parents be in town, Peggy and Mike Shanahan, the latter of whom once led the Denver Broncos to win back-to-back Super Bowl championship rings as head coach, but Shanahan has wife Mandy Shanahan leading the family cheer section. In the VIP box will also be the couples’ three children, Stella, Lexi, and Carter.
In 2018, former Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Chris Simms, who’s friendship with Shanahan dates back to when they were teammates at the University of Texas, revealed a cool fact about his close buddy. Simms announced on the Bleacher Report podcast that Shanahan named his son Carter after his favorite rapper, Lil Wayne, whose birth name is Dwayne Michael Carter Jr.
Simms said, “He was obsessed with Lil Wayne in my early years in the NFL. Kyle’s one of those guys if you’re hanging and we’re drinking some beers or whatever, he’s got to control the music. And he has A.D.D., so we can never actually listen to a full song.”
When Simms’ podcast co-host Adam Lefkoe asked if he listened to Lil’ Wayne the most, “Oh my gosh, yes,” he responded. “So he named his little boy Carter.”
A year later, Shanahan broke his silence on the matter. He told ESPN in 2018, “If I told you it was 100 percent that, my wife would kill me. So, The Carter I started it, and I was just always into that. And when my wife told me she liked the name Carter, it was easy for me because I was pretty obsessed at the time.”
Lil’ Wayne Sent Shanahan & Carter A Surprise Gift In 2018
While neither Shanahan nor his wife Mandy has yet to comment on Simms’ gem of a factoid, it’s well known around 49ers nation that Shanahan loves hip-hop. In 2018, he brought his son Carter to hang out with rapper 50 Cent alongside 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garrapolo.
Further proving Simms speaks the truth, Lil’ Wayne sent Shanahan and his son a special gift before the start of the 2018 season. Delivered by former 49ers receiver Pierre Garcon, the surprise package included an autographed poster and a copy of the rapper’s most recent album, The Carter IV, for Shanahan. Also inside, Lil’ Wayne included a second signed poster and the album, The Carter III, for Shanahan’s son.
Lil’ Wayne included a personal message to his alleged namesake. He wrote, “To Lil’ Carter.”
Afterward, Shanahan explained the separate presents to ESPN. “Mine has the cuss words; the one he gave to my son was edited,” Shanahan said. “That was very thoughtful, so I can actually play it for my son. It was pretty neat. He was pumped. I showed him when I got home. He still doesn’t know how cool it actually is.”
And while Shanahan still hasn’t directly said whether or not Simms revealed a big family secret, he did admit to his love of rap.
Shanahan said, “I just always had to sit in rooms and break down film and draw up plays, and it started when I was in Tampa with [Jon] Gruden,” Shanahan said. “The only thing that gets you through is just sitting there and listening to music. I started out when I was doing that… It was The Carter I.”