During this NFL lockout, plenty of bad and off-the-wall things about NFL players has been reported, both relevant and irrelevant. So it’s only appropriate to mention all the good things players are doing for their communities during the work stoppage.
Michael David Smith at ProFootballTalk put together a nice rundown of NFL players who have organized or volunteered their time at free youth football camps. Among them were New Orleans Saints running back Pierre Thomas, Dallas Cowboys running back Felix Jones and Green Bay Packers wide receiver James Jones.
Packers receiver James Jones told the San Jose Mercury News that he makes his football camp free because he remembers how it felt when he was growing up in San Jose, seeing flyers advertising football camps.
“But they all cost money,” Jones said. “Living in homeless shelters, I knew my mom didn’t have $150 for me to go to a camp. If she did have $150, it was for us to survive.”
As the lockout has dragged on, the players have done a very good job at engaging and reaching out to fans. It’s nice to realize that many of these guys understand where their status comes from and be so happy to give some of that back. The added benefit is that with hope high that a deal can be reached within the next few weeks, it will help engender fan forgiveness toward at least one side of the debate.