The New England Patriots may not be in it for the Super Bowl this year, but it doesn't mean Mainers aren't heavily invested. There are plenty of fans of the teams still remaining, including one super fan who has taken it to the next level this year.

Matty Boutwell, who lives in Minot, has been a San Francisco 49ers fan since 1985.

"It's mainly because I despised the Cowboys and the Giants," he told me. "I just never gave them up."

Matty had been to a few 49er road games  over the years, and even planned to go all of the east coast games in 2020, before the pandemic closed stadiums.

Then around Christmas of 2020, Matty came up with the wild idea of trying to go to as many 49er games as possible in 2021. His partner even encouraged it.

"She said go for it." And Matty did.

However, what once was a relatively small plan, has turned into a year Matty will never forget.

"What started as a five game plan, turned into 11," Matty told me. Those games included trips to nearly every region of the country.

Matty took three trips to San Francisco (Santa Clara to be technical) to see the 49ers host Seattle, Arizona, and Atlanta. The road games he went to were Detroit, Philadelphia, Jacksonville, Seattle, Cincinnati, Los Angeles, and the last two playoff games in Dallas and Green Bay.

And, what a game it was to be at in Green Bay...

As for going to this week's NFC Championship game back in Los Angeles, Matty says its a game-time decision.

"If I go, I won't decide until Saturday night and would leave early Sunday morning," Matty said, citing the impending storm, the fact he was in LA just a few weeks ago for a game, and the increasing ticket prices as reasons for pause.

Plus, if he does have a trip left in him this season, he's going to save that for the big game...if the 49ers make it, of course.

Matty Boutwell
Matty Boutwell

"It's a rather large commitment financially, but if I stay home this weekend and the Niners do end up winning the NFC Championship, then I have a big decision to make."

Here's hoping he has to make that decision.

LOOK: 50 images of winning moments from sports history

Sometimes images are the best way to honor the figures we've lost. When tragedy swiftly reminds us that sports are far from the most consequential thing in life, we can still look back on an athlete's winning moment that felt larger than life, remaining grateful for their sacrifice on the court and bringing joy to millions.

Read on to explore the full collection of 50 images Stacker compiled showcasing various iconic winning moments in sports history. Covering achievements from a multitude of sports, these images represent stunning personal achievements, team championships, and athletic perseverance.

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