Mother’s way: Bucs’ Sean Murphy-Bunting is paid for takeaways but gives back

TAMPA — Practice had ended, but Sean Murphy-Bunting had to wrap up once more. Weaving his way through bodies, the Bucs defensive back located his mother near the sideline and, with the heat index nearing triple digits, gave her an even warmer hug.

Kim Murphy, wearing a white head band and tank top emblazoned with Successful Jocks, the name of her son’s nonprofit organization, is more than the proud parent of one of the league’s future stars.

She is the Bucs’ de facto Team Mom. The unofficial, unpaid role comes with the title of Parent Liaison. It’s a position that general manager Jason Licht agreed was needed, and Kim was the perfect choice.

Such an arrangement might be suffocating for some, but Sean always has been able to breathe more freely because of Kim’s involvement.

“My mom is also like my best friend,” he said. “She’s been with me every step of the way, obviously. She’s been at almost every game I think I’ve ever played. She was always the Team Mom, and really this is very similar.”

Kim raised four boys as a single mom who were all involved in sports ― Gregory Madison, 28; Sean, 25; Martice Bunting, 20; and Carlton Estell, 16. She was the one who drove her boys to practice. But they all were driven to be good men and athletes.

“I was always that mom that was coordinating everything and making sure everybody…

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