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Bills Life: USA Football Protection Tour stops by New Era Field

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1. USA Football Protection Tour stops by New Era Field

As part of the Play Football initiative, a year-round NFL program celebrating youth and high school football, the Buffalo Bills kicked off the 2018 youth football season with a visit from the USA Football Protection Tour, which made its final stop of the year at New Era Field on Friday, Aug. 3. 

This event, one of only six Protection Tour clinics in the entire country, included over 300 local youth football and NFL Flag Football participants from Western New York, making it the largest of its kind in the United States. The Protection Tour offered an exciting day of football and fitness for young players and their families, as well as addressed proper tackling fundamentals, concussion education and equipment fitting. 

After the Protection Tour, participating children and their parents were invited to watch the "The Return of the Blue & Red" night practice, presented by Bud Light, at New Era Field. Additionally, the group had the opportunity to meet a number of Bills players after practice and enjoyed a fireworks show.

For more information on USA Football's health and safety programs, visit usafootball.com.

As a part of the Play Football Initiative, the Buffalo Bills kicked off the 2018 youth football season with a visit from the USA Football Protection Tour, which made its final stop of the year at New Era Field on Friday, Aug. 3.

2. Football, fun, and hydration: Gatorade Junior Training Camp

The Buffalo Bills hosted over 100 children, ages 12 to 14 from the Buffalo and Rochester areas, this past Sunday, Aug. 5, for the second annual Gatorade Junior Training Camp. The event took place at St. John Fisher College before the players hit the field for the ninth day of Bills Training Camp, presented by Connors and Ferris. 

The youth athletes in attendance had the chance to learn about hydration and practice football fundamental skills. They even got to hear from some Bills Legends like Joe Bock, Alex Carrington, and Marlon Kerner. The Bills enjoy hosting the event and promoting safety and hydration amongst young athletes.

"The Gatorade Junior Training Camp is one of our favorite events that we host at Bills Training Camp at St. John Fisher College," explained Preston Teague, Bills Senior Director of Community Relations and Youth Football. "We are excited to provide this opportunity to children in our community to learn about hydration, participate in fundamental football skill development and spend some time with our players."

The kids received Gatorade drinks throughout the event, were provided with a healthy lunch and received a Gatorade gift pack. They also had a chance to meet Bills players post-practice, take pictures and get autographs. It was an exciting day for all those involved.

The Bills hosted a Gatorade Junior Training Camp for Buffalo and Rochester youth at St. John Fisher College.

3. Heritage Christian Services pays a visit to St. John Fisher College

Heritage Christian Services joined the Buffalo Bills Community Relations tent for the 11th day of Bills Training Camp, presented by Connors and Ferris. The organization is based out of the local Western New York area and serves to support individuals with developmental disabilities. Two members of the group, brothers Scott Merritt and Tyler Merritt, were particularly thrilled to be in attendance. They hadn't attended a Bills camp practice since 2010, so it was a completely new experience being able to watch up close from the field.

"I think it's a great opportunity," explained Chuck Collard, the Vice President of Western New York Operations. "At Heritage Christian Services, we have a lot of people we support who are huge Bills fans, so to be able to see them up front like this is a once-in-a-lifetime experience and it's something that they're going to take back to their homes, share with their housemates and tell them what an unbelievable time they had."

4. McCarron's exciting announcement

Quarterback AJ McCarron and wife Katherine Webb-McCarron were thrilled to announce last Wednesday, Aug. 1. that they are expecting their second baby. Webb shared an adorable family photo to her Instagram page that featured their two-year-old son, Tripp, and looks of excitement on their faces. 

Webb-McCarron posted, "...We're excited to give Tripp a little brother to play with this coming Christmas!"

The couple looks like they could not be more thrilled to share the news and are eagerly awaiting the winter season.

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