Inside the Heartwarming Love Story of Zach and Julie Ertz: Everything You Need to Know

The beloved athletes met—of all places—at a baseball game.

When it comes to memorable celebrity meet-cutes, Zach and Julie Ertz have one of our favorite stories. The star athletes (he’s an NFL Super Bowl winner while she’s an Olympic soccer medalist and World Cup champion) met, of all places, at a sporting event. They first crossed paths at a baseball game while they attended rival colleges. And the rest, as they say, is history.

Zach and Julie Ertz kissing at a game

On and off the field, Zach Ertz and his wife Julie are known for their stellar athleticism, their sportsmanship, and their dedication to giving back. Outside of their careers, the two got married in March 2017 and welcomed their first child together, a son, in 2022. Here, we break down everything to know about Zach and Julie Ertz’s relationship, as well as their wedding details and their marriage today.

  • Who is Zach Ertz’s wife? The NFL tight end is married to Julie Ertz, a soccer player for Angel City and the USWNT.
  • Zach and Julie Ertz met in 2012 and began dating shortly after. Zach proposed to Julie in 2016 at the baseball stadium where they first crossed paths.
  • Zach and Julie Ertz’s wedding took place in California on March 26, 2017. Their first son, Madden, was born in August 2022.
  • Black and white photo of Zach and Julie Ertz smiling for the camera

Who is Zach Ertz’s Wife, Julie Ertz?

Photo: Maddie Meyer – FIFA/FIFA | Getty Images

If you know one, you probably know the other. NFL tight end and Super Bowl champion Zach Ertz is married to Julie Ertz (formerly, Julie Johnston), a professional soccer player. Julie Ertz attended college at Santa Clara University in California, where she played soccer from 2010 to 2013. She was drafted to the Chicago Red Stars in 2014, and went on to help lead the US women’s soccer team to victory in the FIFA Women’s World Cup in 2015 and 2019. (In 2015, she played every minute of all seven games.) Julie currently plays for Angel City Football Club in the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL), as well as the US women’s national soccer team. Julie was named the US Soccer Female Player of the Year in 2017 and 2019.

Zach has an equally impressive athletic resume. After attending Stanford University, where he played on their football team from 2009 through 2012, he was drafted into the NFL by the Philadelphia Eagles, where he won Super Bowl LII. He currently plays for the Arizona Cardinals.

Zach and Julie Ertz’s Complete Relationship Timeline

How did Zach Ertz and Julie Johnston meet? It couldn’t be more fitting that these two star athletes were brought together by a sports game. We break down Zach and Julie Ertz’s complete relationship timeline, from 2012 to today.

2012: Zach Ertz and Julie Johnston Meet

Zach and Julie Ertz met at a Stanford University baseball game in 2012. In an interview with The Players’ Tribune, the two shared differing accounts of exactly how their meet-cute went down. “Julie is going to tell you there was only one seat open at the baseball game. I know it,” Zach told the site, to which Julie asserted, “There was only one seat open. For sure. See, he likes to make it seem like he was really courageous.”

By Julie’s telling, Zach wedged into the only seat left in the student section of the stadium. Zach insists that he chose to sit next to his future wife, saying there were “plenty of empty seats.”

“I remember Zach was pretty shy,” Julie said. “His big move was to offer me some of his sunflower seeds. It was a pretty good move, actually. For the rest of the game, I did most of the conversation legwork, and any time there was an awkward pause or something, he’d just offer me more seeds. I probably ate like 500 seeds that night. Don’t underestimate the romantic power of sunflower seeds.”

At the time, Julie was playing soccer for Santa Clara while Zach was on the football team for Stanford—Julie’s school rival. Despite this, both agreed that they didn’t know either was an athlete, as it never came up in their first conversation.

2013: Zach and Julie Take Their Relationship Long-Distance

Zach and Julie Ertz went on their first date that winter—to Chipotle, that is. (“To this day, still one of our favorites,” Zach later said in an interview with Philly Mag.) But the following year, they had to take their budding romance long-distance. Zach was drafted into the NFL by the Philadelphia Eagles, while Julie joined the Chicago Red Stars soccer team.

July 2015: Zach Supports Julie’s World Cup Victory

In 2013, Julie made her debut on the United States women’s national soccer team (USWNT) and was on the roster for the 2015 World Cup. The US defeated Japan in the final, and Zach was in attendance cheering her on. “So proud of my baby @juliejohnston2!” he wrote on Instagram. “Such an amazing journey and now World Cup Champions! Great to be a part of it all! #Champs #USA.”

February 2016: Zach Proposes to Julie

Julie Ertz showing off her engagement ring and kissing Zach Ertz's cheek after his proposal

Photo: @JulieErtz | Instagram

Zach and Julie Ertz got engaged in February 2016 at the Stanford baseball stadium where they first met. Zach selected Julie Ertz’s engagement ring—a round-cut diamond—with the help of his mom. “He took me to the first place we met and I said YES! I get to spend forever with my best friend,” Julie captioned a shot of the proposal on Instagram. “The best day of my life! ️”

March 2017: Zach and Julie Ertz Get Married

Zach and Julie Ertz posing on the beach in their wedding attire

Photo: @JulieErtz | Instagram

,Photo: Britt Rene Photo

One year later, Zach and Julie Ertz’s wedding took place on March 26, 2017. The couple swapped vows in Santa Barbara, California—but more on their wedding details below.

July 2017: Zach and Julie Ertz Pose in ESPN The Magazine’s The Body Issue

That summer, the newlyweds appeared in ESPN The Magazine’s Body Issue, where they opened up about their relationship. “I love watching Julie play [soccer],” Zach gushed in their interview. “I know how much work she puts into her sport and her craft—to see that hard work pay off is very satisfying to me too.”

Julie added, “I think it’s a lot easier for me to watch Zach play [football] than it is for his other family members, just because I know how much he loves the sport and how hard he works at it. The closer I sit, when I hear more of the pads banging against each other, my heart races a little bit. But I just want him to succeed and do what he loves.”

November 2017: Zach and Julie Ertz Open Up to Sports Illustrated

In November 2017, Zach Ertz and his wife Julie invited Sports Illustrated into their home, giving the outlet a peek into what an average day looks like for them. The feature documented their frequent FaceTimes, their dedication to religion, and their shared love of video games.

“I’m just so proud of Zach,” Julie shared. “Being an athlete myself, I see all the hard work I do in my sports, so it’s really cool to see your spouse doing it too. It’s really cool to be a part of his career. It’s a really unique experience. I don’t take any of it for granted.”

He chimed in, adding, “Our relationship isn’t really based on our success as athletes. We love each other for the company. The sports are just a season of our life that we’re in.”

February 2018: Julie Celebrates Zach’s Super Bowl Win

Zach and Julie Ertz are constant fixtures in the crowds at each other’s games, but sometimes their hectic schedules do get in the way. When Zach and the Philadelphia Eagles competed for a spot in Super Bowl LII, Julie was overseas playing for the USWNT. “It was a whole thing, like…do I check my phone at halftime? Do I have the PR person give me some kind of a thumbs up or thumbs down or something?” Julie remembered of not being able to watch her husband’s game. “In the end, I decided to just try to lock in and forget it was even happening until the final whistle. Of course, at halftime, we got to the locker room, and I was looking at my teammates kind of cringing like, ‘Tell me! No, don’t tell me!’ Finally, someone just kind of said something vague, like, ‘They’re doing good.’ And that was it. We went back out to the field, and I tried to block it out.”

Immediately after her match ended, cameras captured Julie’s emotional reaction to learning that her husband did make it to the Super Bowl. In the viral clip, she can be seen celebrating with her teammates, including Megan Rapinoe, as they yelled, “Fly Eagles fly!”

Luckily, Julie was in attendance at the big game, where Zach and the Eagles defeated the New England Patriots. Zach Ertz’s wife shared a boomerang of them throwing confetti on the field after the game, writing, “Congrats to my best friend. I am beyond proud of you!!! #Godissogood.”

June 2018: Zach and Julie Launch the Ertz Family Foundation

That summer, Zach and Julie Ertz teamed up to launch the Ertz Family Foundation, a charitable organization that aims to “empower others by sharing faith, learning through sports and advancing education.” Julie explained that she and her husband were inspired to create the company after he went to Haiti with his NFL teammates. “He saw that there were so many lives that you could touch and help,” she explained. “We really want to give back, especially because we’ve had so many people who have been good to us.”

August 2022: Zach and Julie Ertz Welcome Their First Baby

Zach and Julie Ertz with their baby son, Madden

Photo: @JulieErtz | Instagram

On April 4, 2022, Zach Ertz and his wife Julie announced that they were expecting their first child. The parents-to-be shared formal portraits of Zach kissing Julie’s growing bump on Instagram, writing, “Adding to our starting lineup… Baby Ertz!”

Zach and Julie Ertz’s son Madden was born on August 11, 2022. “One week already with our sweet boy! Madden Matthew Ertz you are so loved,” the new mom shared on social media. “Beyond grateful to be your mommy. @zachertz and I can’t even put into words how blessed we are to be your parents. 🥹Hallelujah “

Inside Zach and Julie Ertz’s Wedding Day

Zach and Julie Ertz holding hands at their wedding ceremony

Photo: @JulieErtz | Instagram

,Photo: Britt Rene Photo

Zach and Julie Ertz’s wedding day took place on March 26, 2017. They were joined by their loved ones at the Ritz-Carlton Bacara in Santa Barbara, California, a classic beachfront venue overlooking the ocean. “Being able to celebrate with all friends and family was the most memorable part of the day for me,” the bride told Martha Stewart.

Considering this was the wedding of two athletes, there were plenty of sports motifs throughout the event. One of Ertz’s groomsmen was his Philadelphia Eagles teammate, Trey Burton, and the couple’s flower girl and ring bearer wore mini versions of the couple’s respective jerseys. Guests also enjoyed cappuccinos decorated with frothy soccer balls and footballs.

Hanging lights decorated with greenery at Zach and Julie Ertz's wedding

Photo: @JulieErtz | Instagram

,Photo: Britt Rene Photo

Julie Ertz’s wedding dress was a fitted lace gown by Katie May, and her bridesmaids wore romantic pink dresses. The event space was decorated with whimsical florals, including hydrangeas, roses and eucalyptus. In fact, Julie told the publication that her favorite element of the big day were the suspended installations that included Edison bulbs, blooms and greenery in the reception tent.

Zach Ertz dipping Julie Ertz during their first dance at their wedding

Photo: @JulieErtz | Instagram

,Britt Rene Photo

After an evening of dancing, the newlyweds left amid a bubble send-off. “What an amazing day celebrating our love,” Julie wrote of the wedding on Instagram. “@zachertz my wonderful husband thank you for everything, for loving me unconditionally, for your amazing friendship and for trying to keep up with me on the dance floor. Yesterday was EPIC!”

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