On the third day of the NFL Draft, Colts players announced draft picks live from the Sports Legends Experience at The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis.
“It’s very exciting. We’re always looking to see who the new players are going to be, who is going to join our team and make our team that much better,” said kicker Adam Vinatieri.
Vinatieri never had his own NFL Draft Day.
“I can’t imagine there’s anything like having your dreams come true at that moment,” he said.
But giving that experience to another player while surrounded by youth football players was a close second.
“As a kid, you dream about playing the sport that you love. And for some of these guys, the dream gets to come true now,” he said.
For the young players, just standing next to Adam Vinatieri while he announced the pick was a dream come true.
“A minute on TV, but about 15 minutes actual time,” said Anthony King, who coaches in the Municipal Gardens Youth Football League. “The smiles, that’s what you do it for – to give kids an opportunity."
The satisfaction he got watching them was enough for King. It’s really the only reason he does it.
“You’ve got to have a heart for it. There’s no money in it,” he said. “We all know that. It actually costs us to do it.”
But he knows he’s planting seeds for the future and that they’ll continue to grow – regardless of whether the kids continue to play.
“If they stop playing football tomorrow, they’ll still remember what football did for them in some part of their life.”
The Colts hosted a draft party at the Sports Legends Experience at the Children's Museum of Indianapolis. Adam Vinatieri, Quincy Wilson, Blue, and Colts Cheerleaders joined the fun, and helped announce live Colts Draft picks!
For Chad Oldham’s players, getting to interact with Vinatieri and cornerback Quincy Wilson was a priceless moment – one they look forward to sharing with the boys.
“We’re going to brag,” said Harlee Dowell.
The Indiana Girls Tackle Football League is one of the only girls tackle leagues in the country.
These girls aren’t just playing the game they love, they’re overcoming the stereotype that girls don’t play tackle football.
“That is something,” said Wilson. “I’ve never seen a girls tackle football team.”
“I love it,” Vinatieri said. “It’s awesome.”
Girls representing football on NFL Network during coverage of the NFL Draft was a great way to help break down barriers.
“I don’t think they realize how big a moment this is for them,” said Oldham. “They’re going to realize it when they get home tonight – and then, they’re going to be like, ‘Whoa!’”
For Wilson, it was fun to relive his draft experience, hearing Robert Mathis call his name last year.
“It’s honestly a dream come true,” he said. “I’m just happy for everyone getting drafted.”
Now on the other side, he enjoyed being able to welcome new players into the league. As a veteran himself now, he looks forward to helping the new players just like his teammates helped him last season.
“Gotta bring some leadership and get them on the right path so we can go win some games this year.”
It was the perfect day and the perfect way to kick off a new team and a new season.
“The families are loving it,” said Kimberly Harms, Director of Public Relations for The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis. “You’re seeing them interacting with cheerleaders, with players, getting autographs. Adam Vinatieri was out there showing them how to kick a field goal. So, that was incredible.”
And the Sports Legends Experience was an appropriate place to do it.
“I think it’s wonderful because the Colts are picking their next legend with these picks and this is where legends are born,” Harms said. “A lot of kids get to come and figure out which sport is theirs and hopefully, they’ll make it to the pinnacle of success as well.” <br>