His father, Billy, wanted his grandson to be named Beowulf.
This is how Gardner Minshew started his life -- and it's how he's starting his NFL career. Like the name he bears, Minshew's path to the NFL kind of defies logic. Like the name he might've had, the former Washington State Cougar is a growing legend.
Go ahead and acquaint yourself with the man, the myth, the "Mississippi Mustache" with seven more awesome Minshew facts:
He's got the best mustache in the game
Name a better sports mustache out there.
Coach Mike Leach can't recall recruiting a mustachioed Minshew to Washington State. So somewhere between his Pac 12 arrival and this postgame moment, he grew gridiron's best facial hair.
Soon, everyone in Minshew's college town was rocking the look. Leach told ESPN he'd never seen more women with mustaches than in Pullman. Naturally, Minshew had to step it up for his final game as a Coug.
He almost backed up Jalen and Tua last year
Minshew committed to UAB in 2014, but his scholarship offer vanished when the football program folded. That led the Brandon, Miss. native on a journey that included Troy, Northwest Mississippi Community College, East Carolina and... nearly Alabama.
Minshew would've sat behind Jalen Hurts and Tua Tagovailoa. He figured it was time to start thinking about a coaching career. And then, according to ESPN, Leach called from Pullman.
Asked Leach: "Do you want to be a backup at Alabama, or lead the nation in passing?"
We know which path Minshew chose. He joined Leach's team, led an offensive explosion, and earned a sixth-round selection in the 2019 NFL Draft.
He has a... unique stretching routine
Let's just leave this here and move on.
He'd challenge top recruits at quarterback camps
Minshew was ready to air it out long before he could grow facial hair.
He trained with high school coordinator Wyatt Rodgers in wide-open passing concepts as a seventh grader. He posted 11,222 career passing yards and 105 touchdowns at Brandon High -- both school records. And he sought out top high school QB recruits like Ricky Town in 2015 to show everyone how he stacked up.
"I always made sure I was throwing next to the dude they offered," Minshew told ESPN. "I would even mix it up with them, talk a little crap and tell them I was going to prove that I was better."
He learned from Leach, then re-taught those same principles. The Pee Wee football team he helped coach back home would go five-wide and pass heavy with 10-to-13 year-olds.
"We threw the ball 34 times, something like that," family friend Steven Wallace told the Pullman Spokesman-Review. "We ran the ball once in the first half."
He's street smart
Minshew pushes boundaries like he pushes offenses down the field.
Case in point: In high school, his 10 a.m. English class prevented him from getting a pre-lift snack. Minshew solved the problem when he petitioned to start a Panini Club outside teacher Nichole Robinson's classroom.
"(Gardner) found some kind of loophole in the rules," Robinson told the Pullman Spokesman-Review. "He comes in and he said, 'Now technically, if we had a club and we were doing it for that purpose.' And by the end of this whole fiasco, I allowed them to cook in between classes."
In high school, he snuck his iPad in textbooks to watch game tape. In college, he hitched back home with friends and pocketed his $750 NCAA travel stipend.
What a savvy move by the league's savviest rookie.
And he's just plain smart
Minshew isn't all facial hair and arm muscles. He scored the second-highest Wonderlic grade (42) of all draft eligible 2019 QB prospects.
"If you could have a classroom full of Gardners, it would be wonderful because he made everyone feel like they had a gift or they were special," Robinson told the Pullman Spokesman-Review. "His energy was contagious."
He wrestles very large sport fish
This seems like a great way to endear yourself to the state of Florida. Get ready, Duval. Beowulf always is.