SCOTT AIR FORCE BASE, Ill. -- Coming off their first win of the season, six St. Louis Rams players brought their enthusiasm for healthy living to the Scott Youth Center Tuesday afternoon.
"We're excited to be here," said Rams linebacker Chris Draft. "We don't just randomly pick the places we go. We care about our service men and women and wanted to come out, say thank you and get people excited."
The Rams visit was in conjunction with the United Way and focused not only on physical fitness, but also encouraged kids to be better people in everything they do.
Special t-shirts were provided by the United Way and each shirts had a different one word message on the front to inspire the children, including; compassion, honesty, courage, perseverance, responsibility, self-discipline and respect.
After a quick opening message, the kids were broken into groups where they were able to run football drills with some of the Rams rookies or learn some dance moves with Chris Draft and a couple of Rams cheerleaders.
In addition to the physical activities, the kids were given a motivational talk by Rams quarterback Trent Green, who grew up in St. Louis and is in his second stint with the Rams.
"All of the kids did a great job today," Mr. Green said. "A lot of pro football players don't realize they are role models. We have the power to impact people's lives both on and off the field."
Mr. Green said the concept of being a good role model and motivating kids to lead healthy lives is a subject near and dear to his and his teammate's hearts.
"I've been involved in youth projects for quite some time," Mr. Green said. "When people, especially kids, see us on TV they are really seeing our character whether we are winning or losing. I think about that all the time."
This actually was not Mr. Green's first visit to Scott.
He said he visited Scott about 20 years ago when he was a junior in high school, but this was his first as a professional athlete.
Scott Youth Center director, Cheryl Cochran, was thrilled have the Rams visit and work with the kids she sees everyday.
"The United Way contacted me and said the Rams wanted to come visit us," Mrs. Cochran said. "They picked Scott specifically. It's part of their community outreach program."
The Scott Youth Center has between 450 to 500 members. About 200 kids per day come and go through the youth center for before and after school activities.