15 Varsity football players from Roselle Park High School (RPHS) and their coach, James Foy, participated in a NFL-sponsored Football Camp on June 18th at Princeton University.
The instructors were The Dallas Cowboys NFL staff lead by Jason Garrett – their head coach. Former New York Giants wide-receiver Amani Toomer was also an instructor. Over 300 high school players from New York and New Jersey participated in the camp which included professional instruction on playing technique for wide-receivers, quarterbacks, defensive backs, and running backs. There was also a 7 on 7 tournament which every camper participated in at the Princeton University Stadium and practice fields. High school coaches were also able to interact with coach Garrett’s staff during the course of the day camp.
The NFL runs the program to help support their initiative entitled ‘PLAY 60’ for exercise as well as HSPD (High School Player Development). Since its inception in 2001, the NFL HSPD program has provided thousands of high school football players with a week-long curriculum that focuses on inspiring excellence in the classroom, community, and on the playing field. In this particular case, this was only a one-day program.
In 2010, more than 20,000 high school football players nationwide participated from May to August as part of the NFL HSPD program presented by the National Guard. The program, which is partially funded by the NFL Youth Football Fund, is free for students and includes a character development and life skills component featuring NFL players and coaches, preparation for standardized tests, and discussions on life after high school. Students also take part in a Centers for Disease Control (CDC) session about player safety, including concussion treatment and management.
However, with the NFL Lockout, none of the current NFL Players were able to participate in this year’s camp as they have in the past. All 15 participants received a t-shirt, NFL logo hat, ‘Under Armour’ workout shirt, as well as sample products from Gatorade. In addition, they received a free lunch and took a tour around the university campus.
The RPHS players who participated were Brendan Leary, DJ Del Rio, Zach Fahoury, Ramon Jenkins, Rob Bianchi, Sergio Escobar, Bil Van Buskirk, Nick Mucci, Samar Branch, Kevin Mettlus, Frankie Scneeburger, Mike Arocho, Juan Carmona, Mike Williams, and Jon Castro.