Instagram Is Loving Padma Lakshmi's Football Throwback

Most food lovers know Padma Lakshmi as the host of "Top Chef" and "Taste the Nation," but these aren't the only hats Lakshmi wears. She's also the author of several cookbooks, a journalist, philanthropist, doting mother, and former model. 

Moreover, Lakshmi is known to be open with interviewers and fans about her personal life and the causes she cares about. Earlier this month, Lakshmi shared an emotional tribute to her grandmother, who recently passed away. And as the co-founder of the Endometriosis Foundation of America, she's also been transparent about her experience with endometriosis, once telling Drew Barrymore that she thought she'd never have kids due to her surgeries related to the disorder.

Lakshmi is an open book, but despite all of her honesty, she still seems to have a few surprises up her sleeves. Her 1.2 million Instagram followers, for starters, were definitely stunned by the throwback photo she posted to celebrate the Super Bowl. 

Lakshmi adds football player to her lengthy resume

We already knew that Lakshmi has quite the impressive resume, but perhaps no one expected the blast from the past she shared on Instagram this weekend. The photo shows Lakshmi posing in a football uniform, kneeling on a field and holding a football. According to the caption, the picture was taken in approximately 1987, when Lakshmi was in high school.

One follower commented, "Wow, never would have guessed!" while Chelsea Handler chimed in, "This doesn't add up." Others seemed less surprised, such as one who said, "Always been a champion!" and another who offered Lakshmi the title of the GOAT, or greatest of all time. Several commenters made jokes in reference to her jersey number, 10. One user wrote, "Always knew you were a 10!" If Lakshmi chose the number based on the NFL rules at the time, she would have been a quarterback, kicker, or punter (via The Sporting News). Finally, of the 200+ comments on the post, one really deserves a cheer: "OMG, the NFL really missed out on you."