When wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins joined the Cardinals in 2020, he called owner Michael Bidwill to ask what suggestions Bidwill might have where Hopkins could impact the community.
Hopkins helped with donations during the pandemic. And now, Hopkins has unveiled another gift for his new community -- a partnership with NFL FLAG to create the "DeAndre Hopkins NFL Flag Football League" in Arizona.
Starting in December, the children's league will run through February 2022 in several locations, including Phoenix, Scottsdale, and Tempe. More locations will be added throughout the year. Registration is open until Nov. 14th and games will occur exclusively on Saturdays.
The league offers elementary and middle-school boys and girls training trips from Hopkins, access to playing facilities, along with Cardinals and NFL gear and apparel.
"This program is a great way to not only grow the game of football, but help push something I'm very passionate about, youth health and wellness," Hopkins said in a press release. He shared, "I'm extremely grateful for this opportunity and am looking forward to making some unforgettable memories this upcoming season!"
Originally from South Carolina, Hopkins takes pride in helping his community. It's why he donated $150,000 to Arizona's Covid-19 relief fund in 2020, less than 14 days after becoming a Cardinal via trade. It's why he aims to expand his charity work – in Arizona – by helping thousands of people. And it's among the most significant reasons why the pandemic incredibly frustrated him.
"My mom and I, we're about to get into the community," Hopkins said. You know, but it was COVID, so we really couldn't do much."
Hopkins is globally respected as a great player, likely headed to Canton someday. But it's his generous and care-first demeanor that makes him an even greater human being.
"It is great to see current NFL players like DeAndre start an NFL FLAG league in the greater Phoenix community," said Roman Oben, the NFL Vice President of Football Development, "These efforts will create more opportunities for all kids to learn the game of football."