Nov 19, 2023; Green Bay, Wisconsin, USA; Green Bay Packers safety Jonathan Owens (34) hugs his wife, Olympic gymnast Simone Biles, before game against the Los Angeles Chargers at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports

For the bulk of his NFL career, Jonathan Owens has primarily been known as Simone Biles’ significant other.

But as it turns out, the fifth-year safety had no idea what he was getting into when he first matched with his future wife on the dating app Raya nearly four years ago.

“I literally had the app for a couple days and she pops up,” Owens told Ryan Clark on The Pivot Podcast. “I’m like, ‘Let me see who this is. Gymnastics?’ I never really paid attention to gymnastics so it piqued my curiosity. So I’m like, ‘OK that’s a lot, I’ll see what’s up.’

“I didn’t know who she was at the time, but the first thing I saw was that she just had a bunch of [social media] followers, so in my mind I’m like, ‘OK, she’s gotta be good.”

How was it possible that Owens didn’t know who one of America’s most famous Olympians was? As he explained it, her star-making performance in the 2016 Summer Games coincided with an especially busy time in his life.

“When she won the Olympics, I was in college and we didn’t have NBC, we didn’t have Olympic channels and we’re in camp in late-July, early-August. So I’m not paying attention,” Owens said. “I never had a moment where I would have watched.”

From there, Owens made it clear that four-time Olympic gold medalist began pursuing him — and not the other way around. The rest, as they say, is history, as the couple got engaged in 2022 and were married earlier this year.

In the time since, any mention of Owens’ on-field performance with the Green Bay Packers has often included a reference to his much more famous spouse. It’s not often that an NFL player is overshadowed by his own wife, but the Missouri Western product made it clear that he believes he’s the “catch” in the relationship.

“I always say that the men are the catch,” Owens said. “I was afraid to commit. I was like, ‘It’s my third year, I’m trying to — it’s kind of early.’ But it happens when you least expect it. We hung out and we hit it off instantly.”

[The Pivot Podcast]

About Ben Axelrod

Ben Axelrod is a veteran of the sports media landscape, having most recently worked for NBC's Cleveland affiliate, WKYC. Prior to his time in Cleveland, he covered Ohio State football and the Big Ten for outlets including Cox Media Group, Bleacher Report, Scout and Rivals.