NFL Health Update: Patriots help UnitedHealthCare to build park

NFL UPDATE -- OCTOBER 1, 2014

PATRIOTS TEAM UP WITH UNITEDHEALTHCARE AND KABOOM! TO BUILD NEW PLAYGROUND

For the fifth consecutive year, the Kraft family and New England Patriots Charitable Foundation teamed with UnitedHealthcare and KaBOOM! to build a playground at the Brooke Mattapan Charter School.

Participating in the project were more than a dozen current and former Patriots players, Patriots cheerleaders, Pat Patriot, New England Revolution players and 200 volunteers from UnitedHealthcare and KaBOOM!

"As we work with UnitedHealthcare on our fifth playground together, we continue to build upon our mission of encouraging children to live healthy lifestyles," said Josh Kraft, president, New England Patriots Charitable Foundation. "We hope the playground will enrich the lives of children at Brooke Mattapan Charter School and demonstrate to all involved the benefits of volunteering."

BRONCOS HIGH SCHOOL GAMES OF THE WEEK SUPPORTING COMMUNITY INITIATIVES

The Denver Broncos recently expanded their "High School Game of the Week" series, sponsored by Nike and the Colorado National Guard this season, to include community service initiatives tied to each week's game. During September, the participating teams collected donations to support Food Bank of the Rockies. Teams scheduled to be highlighted during October will support the American Cancer Society in recognition of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Broncos players have also taken part this year, surprising each team at a practice leading up to their Game of the Week. Players who have participated in the program include Montee Ball, Ben Garland, Quinton Carter, Lerentee McCray, Corey Nelson, Quanterus Smith and Juwan Thompson.

The Broncos provide pregame entertainment for the participating schools. Students, families and faculty have the chance to enjoy autograph opportunities with Broncos alumni, cheerleaders and Miles the Mascot.

COWBOYS SHARE FÚTBOL AMERICANO PLAY 60

Dallas Cowboys players Gavin Escobar and George Selvie recently visited an elementary school in Dallas, leading a Fútbol Americano PLAY 60 clinic in celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month. Escobarand Selvie were greeted with an original PLAY 60 cheer written by the students before breaking out into PLAY 60-style sprints, ladders and pass drills. The elementary school -- Gable Allen Elementary -- is also where the Dallas Cowboys Women's Association focuses its "Reading Blitz" initiative, with Cowboys wives and significant others donating their time each week to read to students.

EAGLES HIGHLIGHT CITY'S HARVEST PROGRAM

Philadelphia Eagles players Mark Sanchez and Bennie Logan along, with Eagles Cheerleaders joined a group of children at the NET Garden, where they were given a tour and learned how to harvest vegetables. The NET Garden is one of Pennsylvania Horticultural Society's (PHS), newest City Harvest gardens, providing an opportunity for children to learn how to plant, care for and enjoy healthy, locally grown food.

The PHS, a 2014 Eagles Care partner, helps bring nutritious foods to families in need while tackling the issue of food insecurity in Philadelphia. Since the program began in 2006, the PHS City Harvest has donated more than 280,000 pounds of fresh produce to local food cupboards and helps feed 1,500 families in need each week during the growing season.

JAGUARS PLAYER INSPIRES KIDS WITH LEARNING DISABILITIES

Jacksonville Jaguars defensive end Red Bryant recently visited R.L. Brown's GRASP Choice Academy, a program that focuses on children with learning disabilities. During Bryant's visit, he spoke to the children about the struggles he had in school after being diagnosed with Dyslexia.

"I just wanted to let these kids know that it's ok to learn differently and that just because you're a different learner than everyone else, that doesn't mean that you aren't smart," Bryant said. He likes what this program is doing here in the Duval County School system because he feels it is giving the children the necessary tools to be successful in the classroom.

Bryant plans on making frequent stops by the classrooms to monitor the children's progression throughout the school year.

CARDINALS, ARIZONA SUPER BOWL HOST COMMITTEE UNVEIL NEW FIELD

The Arizona Cardinals, in partnership with the Arizona Super Bowl Host Committee and the NFL Foundation, unveiled a newly refurbished football field -- Super Bowl XLIX Legacy Field -- at ASU Preparatory Academy last week.

Cardinals safety Tyrann Mathieu joined Nicole Bidwill and David Rousseau, Chairman of the Super Bowl Host Committee, for the dedication, along with Cardinals Cheerleaders, and team mascot Big Red.

"The Cardinals and NFL Foundation are proud to assist with this Super Bowl XLIX Legacy Field," said Cardinals President Michael Bidwill, who also serves on the board of the NFL Foundation. "When discussing the positive effects of having the Super Bowl in this community, you often hear about the economic impact and invaluable exposure the game brings. But just as important are the many meaningful community projects like this that will positively impact the Valley long after the game has been played."

-- NFL Communications

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