The Miami Dolphins hosted their annual rookie clinic on Tuesday, a partnership in South Florida with Special Olympics. The Special Olympics in the Miami metropolitan area has over 12,000 athletes, and this is what Special Olympics Senior Regional VP, Erin Kozlowski described as their athletes’ compare to their Super Bowl.
Student-athletes came out for an afternoon flag football game at the Dolphins practice facility in Davie. The players got a chance to interact with the Special Olympics athletes, but one rookie in particular that really felt the impact of the Special Olympics was DT Vincent Taylor.
Taylor describes how his godmother, Shawn Britt, was in charge of Area 21 Special Olympics in San Antonio. Britt gave his family a home after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, and as a direct result, Taylor became heavily involved in volunteering with the Special Olympics.
The entire Dolphins rookie class were present, including Chase Allen, Isaac Asiata, Winston Chapman, Isaiah Ford, Davon Godchaux, Matt Haack, Charles Harris, Larry Hope, Malcolm Lewis, Cameron Malveaux, Praise Martin-Oguike, Raekwon McMillan, Torry McTyer, Drew Morgan, Joby Saint Fleur, De’Veon Smith, Eric Smith, Maurice Smith, Damore’ea Stringfellow, Cordrea Tankersley and Vincent Taylor.
This was the rookie class’ first community event, and they were refereeing and participating in the games with student athletes from grades 6-12.
“To me, it’s all about giving back,” Miami Dolphins defensive tackle Vincent Taylor said. “I worked with Special Olympics in my hometown of San Antonio. For me to do it in Miami, it’s a fun event. For me to help Special Olympics Florida, it’s a good time to be able to give back to the community.”
The spirit from both the rookies and the student athletes proved why this event has been so successful in the past and will continue to do so for years to come.