Smiles have been limited in eight-year-old Jack Bolton's life. Suffering from spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), Jack is unable to walk or crawl and relies solely on a motorized wheelchair for transportation. Last Saturday, Jack was nothing but smiles as he coached his beloved Carolina Panthers just one week before the team's first preseason matchup.

The Panthers organization partnered with the Make-a-Wish Foundation to make Jack the team's honorary coach for the day. Of course, that day was Fan Fest at the Bank of America stadium in Charlotte where over 20,000 fans showed up to watch Jack lead the team around the field.

"Jack was on it all day, charting the plays throughout the practice and then turning those back into Coach Rivera for post-practice evaluation when looking at game tapes," said Panthers spokesman Riley Fields.

According to the SMA Foundation, one in 6,000 to one in 10,000 children are born with spinal muscular atrophy. This genetic neuromuscular disease is characterized by muscle atrophy and weakness caused by defects in the survival motor neuron 1 (SMN1). It is considered the leading genetic cause of death in infants and toddlers.

The facts surrounding Jack's life-threatening disease meant little to him last Saturday. He was more focused on signing his official contract with Panthers' general manager Dave Gettleman. Head coach Ron Rivera even read aloud a pre-practice speech that Jack had wrote. But the eight-year-old coach wasn't working for free.

"His pay was unlimited hot dogs and drinks for the day," Jack's mother, Holly Bolton, told News14 Charlotte.

"This is a day that he's never going to forget, so amazing."