The Atlanta Falcons went PINK in honor of breast cancer awareness in their last youth football clinic of the season in Gwinnett last night. Over 150 kids and their parents attended the Falcons football clinic at Meadowcreek High School on an unseasonably warm night, to practice proper football technique, improve their skills and meet former NFL Alumni.
As kids entered the field, they were given black and pink t-shirts and pink wrist bands, and eye black, courtesy of Northside Hospital, then took to the field for football instruction and lessons on teamwork, excellence and integrity.
For the first hour of the clinic, former Atlanta Falcons Bobby Butler, Buddy Curry, Ken Oxendine, Floyd Hodge and 11 other coaches — including Meadowcreek High School Coach Jason Carrera and staff, as well as a few of the high school players—worked the young athletes through Quarterback, Runningback, and Lineman drills — working on speed, agility and accuracy. The second hour of the clinic focused specifically on proper tackling techniques — keeping your head up, buzzing feet and ripping up on impact–to keep a child’s head out of the tackle, in hopes to avoid injury.
“I brought my son tonight to the clinic, for additional work on drills and technique, but also, for him to learn about sportsmanship, dedication to the game, and discipline as well as teamwork from the NFL Alumni that played at the highest level. Playing team sports helps kids to learn how to get along and to deal with challenges in a positive manner. We’re so glad the Falcons hosted this clinic tonight,” said William Tankersley, father of a 12-year old attending the clinic tonight.
The clinic concluded with a Gamechanger Talk from former Virginia Tech and Atlanta Falcons Running Back (now Notre Dame Academy Coach) Ken Oxendine, who shared his story with the athletes, impressing upon them that they must listen and be paying attention in life to take advantage of opportunities that come their way. “Work hard and listen to your teachers, your coaches, your parents — so you are prepared and can take advantage of an opportunity to succeed.”
The Atlanta Falcons hosted 4 youth football clinics this year across Georgia– in Columbus, Stockbridge, Alpharetta, Norcross, and they will host a special clinic for military families in Augusta next month. Additionally, the Falcons held 11 Moms Football Safety Clinics in GA, TN, AL and SC this year, focusing on empowering Moms to understand the X and O’s of the game, as well as the football safety aspect of proper equipment fitting (helmet and shoulder pads), concussion awareness, supplements, proper tackling techniques and more.