The National Football League annouced this week that 40 young athletes from across the country will compete in the NFL PUNT, PASS & KICK National Finals on Saturday, January 12, in Atlanta during the weekend of the NFL Divisional Playoffs. A special on-field award presentation will air during the Atlanta Falcons-Seattle Seahawks NFC Divisional Playoff Sunday, January 13 on FOX. The game kicks off at 1 p.m. Eastern.Â Â
In a release fromt the NFL's New York City office, finalists will compete separately in five age divisions at the Falconsâ€™ team facility with the top scorer in each group crowned national champion. All participants launch two punts, two passes and two kicks with scores based on distance and accuracy (in feet). The best score from each activity is tabulated to determine the athleteâ€™s total. All youngsters advanced to the national finals through local, sectional and team championship competitions held throughout the NFL regular season. The top four scorers in each age group from across the country qualified as national finalists.
NFL Punt, Pass & Kick, which began in 1961, is celebrating its 51st anniversary. It is the nationâ€™s largest grassroots sports skills competition. NFL stars â€“ including Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterbacks Troy Aikman and Dan Marino â€“ competed in the Punt, Pass & Kick program as youngsters.Â Â
All participants and their guest are provided airfare, hotel accommodations and tickets to the Falcons-Seahawks NFC Divisional Playoff.Â Â
Finalists along with hometown and the NFL team that hosted their regional competition:Â Â Â
Boys 6-7Â Â
Matiwos Rumley from Hebron, Connecticut, New England Patriots
Omar Zachery from Lawrenceville, Georgia, Atlanta Falcons
Parker Gwyn from Lafayette, Louisiana, New Orleans Saints
Colten Sell from Woodland Park, Colorado, Denver Broncos
Ava Reuter from Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin, Green Bay Packers
Dâ€™Mya Hill from Lubbock, Texas, Dallas Cowboys
Hayden Kurtz from Peculiar, Missouri, Kansas City Chiefs
Ava Stanchina from Northfield, Minnesota, Minnesota Vikings
Tyler Jenson from Albuquerque, New Mexico, Arizona Cardinals
Jaxxon Warren from Flower Mound, Texas, Dallas Cowboys
John Latimer from Orlando, Florida, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Nicholas Dunlap from Birmingham, Alabama, Tennessee Titans
Jayla Medeiros from Kealakekua, Hawaii, San Diego Chargers
Alayna Suprenand from Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, Green Bay Packers
Breanna Norris from Boise, Idaho, Seattle Seahawks
Julia Kreutner from Brandon, South Dakota, Minnesota Vikings
Joshua Oâ€™Neill from Nutley, New Jersey, New York Giants
Mason Falslev from Benson, Utah, Denver Broncos
Garrett Shumski from Mankato, Minnesota, Minnesota Vikings
Will Reichard from Hoover, Alabama, Atlanta Falcons
Madison Bradley from Haddonfield, New Jersey, Philadelphia Eagles
Sophia Saucerman from Indianapolis, Indiana, Indianapolis Colts
L. Jalissa Briggs from Orem, Utah, Denver Broncos
Eryn Puett from Columbia, Missouri, St. Louis Rams
Kolbe Muray from Malta, Montana, Denver Broncos
Andrew Johns from Buford, Georgia, Atlanta Falcons
Garrett Elder from Leesburg, Indiana, Indianapolis Colts
Jack Noffke from New London, Wisconsin, Green Bay Packers
Alisa Fallon from Des Plaines, Illinois, Chicago Bears
Kaylee Carlsen from North Logan, Utah, Denver Broncos
Madison Kandel from Killbuck, Ohio, Cleveland Browns
Kristina Lynch from Granger, Indiana, Indianapolis Colts
Bridger Beus from Garland, Utah, Denver Broncos
Matthew Talsky from Florence, South Carolina, Carolina Panthers
Jay Small from Hinton, Iowa, Minnesota Vikings
Grant Steinborn from Flushing, Michigan, Detroit Lions
Sydney Palmer from Pierre, South Dakota, Minnesota Vikings
Kayla Kline from Mifflinburg, Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Eagles
Lalelei Mataâ€™afa from Lahaina, Hawaii, San Diego Chargers
Rebecca Golderman from Albany, New York, New York Giants
NFL Punt, Pass and Kick is part of NFL Youth Football, which provides ways for children to play, watch and experience the game of football. For more information, visit www.NFLPPK.com. For other NFL PLAY 60 youth programs, visit www.NFLRUSH.com.
In other NFL news...
The National Football League announced this week that thhe night before the two top teams kick off Super Bowl XLVII, the NFL will salute its best players, performances and plays from the 2012 season with a star-studded football and entertainmentÂ event - â€œ2nd Annual NFL Honorsâ€ - a two-hour primetime awards special to air nationally on Saturday, February 2, 9-11 p.m. Eastern on CBS.
Current and former players such as Jim Brown, Dwight Clark, Emmitt Smith, Barry Sanders and Steve Young are scheduled to be in attendance as the NFL and the Associated Press announce their annual accolades in an awards show format. â€œNFL Honors,â€ which debuted last year in Indianapolis, is now an annual event from the Super Bowl city.Â The winners will be on hand to accept their awards.
Award-winning actor Alec Baldwin returns as the host of the show from the famed Mahalia Jackson Theater in New Orleans and the show will feature a live performance from ONEREPUBLIC.
Kicking off the night will be â€œSuper Bowl Saturday Night presented by XFINITY,â€ a red carpet show on NFL Network from 8 to 9 p.m. Eastern featuring the sights and sounds of Super Bowl week and many of the stars who will be celebrating the best of the NFL later that evening.
Among the awards that will be announced will be the prestigious Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award, which recognizes a playerâ€™s off-the-field community service as well as his playing excellence.
Seven of the awards will be from the AP. Those awards, which include AP Most Valuable Player and AP Coach of the Year, are voted on at the end of the regular NFL season by a nationwide media panel of 50 people who regularly cover the league. The ballots are tabulated solely by the AP.
The AP is providing the list of honorees to the NFL for the program and any advertising or sponsorship on the broadcast is being handled separately and independently by the NFL.
The full list of awards that will be presented will be:
AP Most Valuable Player presented by Papa Johnâ€™s
Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year
AP Coach of the Year
AP Comeback Player of the Year presented by Lenovo
AP Offensive Player of the Year
AP Defensive Player of the Year
AP Offensive Rookie of the Year presented by Pepsi Max
AP Defensive Rookie of the Year presented by Pepsi Max
Pepsi Max Rookie of the Year
FedEx Air & Ground Players of the Year
GMC Never Say Never Moment of the Year
Bridgestone Play of the Year
NFL.com Fantasy Player of the Year presented by SAP
â€œGreatness on the Roadâ€ Award presented by Courtyard Marriott
Don Shula NFL High School Coach of the Year Award
Salute To Service Award Presented by USAA
Top-Tier Sponsors of â€œ2nd Annual NFL Honorsâ€ include Bridgestone, Comcast, Lenovo, Papa Johnâ€™s, Pepsi, SAP. Associate Sponsors include FedEx, GMC, Courtyard Marriott, USAA.
â€œ2nd Annual NFL Honorsâ€ is an NFL Network production in association with Dick Clark Productions.Â For more information about â€œNFL Honorsâ€ fans may visit http://www.nfl.com/honors.