Fans hold huge Super Bowl send off pep rally for the Atlanta Falcons

ATLANTA (CNN) – It was one heck of a party. On Sunday, fans in Atlanta held a party to send off the Falcons to the Super Bowl in style.

“We love our team. Rise up! Rise up! My whole blood bleeds red, black and white for the Falcons,” said Erika Thompson.

She was one of thousands of fans attending the “Rising Up Pep Rally” at Atlantic Station.

For this die-hard Dirty Bird fan, the Super Bowl is more than just a game. It’s something holding her family together in a time of need.

“My mom passed [away] two weeks ago. It was last conversation we had as I was leaving the Falcons game. We just had a great conversation. Thirty minutes later my mom had a brain aneurysm and she passed,” said Thompson.

Thompson’s mother would absolutely love for the Falcons to be Super Bowl champions. And former Falcons quarterback DJ Shockley has a game plan to beat the New England Patriots.

“You’ve got to be able to run the ball, Devante and Tevin are going to be huge,” said Shockley. “And also not allow Brady to have big plays on the back end.”

But Thompson says X’s and O’s will only go so far. And the falcons will win with help from an extra player from up above: Her mother Maxine.

“She’s there in spirit. So, if you hear a voice that’s telling you to do something a little different that’s my mom. So, do what she says, because she’s always right.”

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