Bills offensive lineman Demetrius Bell never had a fitness program to encourage him to stay active growing up. So Tuesday, Bell and fellow rookies cornerback Reggie Corner and tight end Derek Fine traveled to Toronto and spoke to students about the importance of youth fitness.
The players spoke about the NFL Play 60 campaign, which encourages youths to exercise for at least 60 minutes each day, at the Fern Avenue Junior and Senior Public School.
After speaking about the importance of youth fitness, Bell led students in a series of hopping and shuffling drills while Corner led running drills and Fine led throwing and pass catching drills designed to get the kids active and energized.
The events brought back youthful memories for Corner.
"I had fun," he said. "When we helped the students with their drills it made me happy and I felt like a kid again."
The school's boys touch football team, coming off the Toronto city championship, found special use in the programs. Dylan, an 11-year old seventh grader, said he took the advice of the Bills seriously because of where their lessons got them.
"It felt great to have great football players show us how they got to be so good and be healthy," Dylan said.
After the clinic, the players took photos with and signed autographs for the students. Before making their way back to Buffalo, the players made sure they stopped at the main office—all admittedly Bills fans. Principal Craig Tsuji said his students gained a lot from the lessons the Bills brought.
"It means a lot for the Bills to come here," he said. "We just won the city football championship and this is a nice culminating event for the kids. Any time we can combine the athletic side with the education side, it's great. The kids looked forward to this and were inspired today."