Ahead of Sunday afternoon's game between the Bills and New England Patriots, QB Josh Allen made nine-year-old Liam Lynch's dreams come true.
Back in November, the Bills ran a sweepstake with the chance to join Allen and Good Morning Football host, Kyle Brandt, on a segment of his podcast, Kyle Brandt's Basement. Liam and his dad, Matt, were the lucky winners of the contest and joined an episode of the podcast in December.
Liam's parents shared that while it was a little nerve-wracking for their son, Allen made him feel comfortable from the moment they met on the screen.
"It was really nice to be able to connect the dots with Josh from the beginning when we started following him," Matt said. "One of the things that I told him on the podcast was, you may not have known it, but you were with us the whole time."
After Liam gave Allen some homework to watch the movie Avatar, Allen invited the Lynch family to the last home game of the season against the New England Patriots where they met him on the field during pre-game warmups.
The nine-year-old's face lit up when Allen ran out of the tunnel and over to the sidelines to greet him. The QB gave Liam his Avatar movie review, signed his jersey, and took him and his brother, Luke, onto the field to play catch.
"It's something that Liam has always talked about," Liz Lynch, Liam's mother, said. "Being able to meet him, ask him questions, get to know him and kind of understand what motivates him … Kind of making that connection with him. It was really cool to now witness this complete circle and this full circle moment."
The circle that Liz is referring to started about three years ago.
In December 2019, Matt and Liz noticed abnormal swelling in Liam's neck. After taking him to a pediatrician, Liz was referred to Oishei Children's Hospital (OCH), where testing later revealed that Liam had lymphoma. Liam was immediately admitted for inpatient care and spent 33 days at OCH.
When going through treatment, Liam turned to Allen and the Buffalo Bills.
"When he was at Oishei, one of the things he looked forward to the most was all being able to get together as a family and watch the Bills every Sunday," Liz said. "That was the one thing we all had in common."
During his time at OCH, a place that Allen holds dear to his heart, Liam received a video from his idol wishing him well. This video, which is still saved on his iPad to this day, touched Liam's heart and ultimately sparked his love for the QB.
"They had that connection right away," Liz said. "Then as the year went on and into the next year, he was all into football and all into Josh. He would tell everyone about it. It was something that gave him something to look forward to."
Next up for Liam was attending Bills Training camp this past summer as a "Champion Kid" through OCH's partnership with the Bills. The young fan was thrilled to snag an autograph from Allen on his hat – which he slept with for two weeks after he got it signed.
Four months later, it was Liam's turn. As part of the 2022 'My Cause My Cleats' initiative, Liam's signature was featured on Allen's cleat that he wore during warmups before Week 13's matchup with the Patriots. And after three years of building up their special bond, the two got to share a special moment together before Allen led his team to a victory over New England.
"This was the icing on the cake now that we were finally able to connect with him in person," Matt said. "It'll stick with Liam for the rest of his life."