Brit Kids and Fans Meet NFL Stars
IMAGES AT RIGHT. Inspiring a new generation, from top:
Just a few short weeks from now our lives will once again be transformed. We all become the armchair quarterback, the leaping wide receiver, a running back juking his way through a densely packed line of scrimmage, or even a head coach, yelling in despair as your team commits another turnover.
Yes, it’s time for the National Football League to make its timely return to our already full diaries. Of course we’ve had the Combine and Draft to keep us occupied in the short months after the season curtain call of Denver’s Super Bowl 50 win. Recently the mini-camps and team activities, alongside another bout of free agency have kept the news wires busy.
Training camps are about to open and that’s when you really get the buzz, the anticipation of how your team will fare in the coming months. Every fan will harbour some hope that their team can make a run, or at least improve on the previous year. It’s also the time when the NFL starts to ramp up its media and marketing here in the United Kingdom. As you know there are three games to be played this year in London, including a first ever trip to the home of rugby, Twickenham Stadium.
Tuesday saw another Fan Forum, with no less than eight players on parade. Victor Cruz (Giants), Carlos Dunlap and Domata Peko (Bengals), Dwayne Allen (Colts), Lance Hendricks (Rams), Chris Baker and DeAngelo Hall (Redskins), and Denard Robinson (Jaguars) were those charged with keeping the UK fan faithful entertained. Each were all thoroughly impressed with just how much the UK fan knew about the game, even addressing issues about technique. The mix of competitions and fun always goes down well and it’s good to see the players at ease in such surroundings.
NFL Summer Bowl
“It’s good to see these kids excited about playing football. I’m excited just to be and to watch them”, said an enthused Cruz, although not immediately recognised by the youngsters until they were told he was an actual player in the NFL he was still happy to be involved. “They were actually great athletes” beamed Redskins veteran Hall, “we had a couple of kids making breaks and tight roping down the side lines, I was very impressed.”
“It’s been amazing. To see the kids face light up when I draw plays, or they make a play, I’m glad they’re excited an enjoying the same experience I enjoyed when I was growing up.”, was Allen’s reaction to the display that was put on.
“I’m super excited to be playing at Wembley Stadium this year, a super atmosphere, home of the FA Cup Final, England international team, I’m a big soccer fan so I know how much Wembley means, I’m excited to step on the pitch and do my thing” was the Bengals Peko response to the upcoming game. “We’ve been talking about it since we saw it on our schedule so we see how it goes, but were definitely excited to bring out game to the UK, excited to bring our football to the London fans, and the fan base is really big here. They’re not just fans of individual teams but the game which is amazing.” Cruz added as he looked ahead to the Giants visit to Twickenham. “I’m sure the seats will be packed, and the atmosphere will be just electric so I can’t wait to be out here.” was Hendricks take on the Rams game against the Giants.
NFL at Tottenham Hotspurs
With the NFL showcasing all that is good about its media wing, assisted wonderfully by the people at NFLUK and the local communities, it’s now back to the business of honing their more natural skills of football. Their hard work is just beginning so the rest of us can sit back and enjoy the spectacle they provide.