Camp Fitzgerald: Trend or Fad?

By WRITE AGAIN  |   Tuesday, July 21, 2009  |  Comments( 1 )

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As far as NFL fans are concerned there is nothing more frustrating than having to live through the seemingly never-ending off-season. After absorbing all the summer goodies as presented by the likes of T.O. and Chad Ocho-whatever and the ever present, "I wonder what Brett is doing?" the NFL fan doesn't really have much in the way of substance left after the draft, unless you count the continual string of Super Bowl replays on the NFL network.

However, recently an NFL player has come up with the idea of a camp for players during the off season. I'm not really sure if anything similar was ever done in the past, but maybe this will be trend setting event or possibly it will cease to exist and end up being a fad. I'm not aware of whether this is team approved or not, (insurance comes to mind here,) but non-team operated training is not all that unusual as often players will get together for sessions, mostly in Florida and more often than not they are based on weight training. Arizona Cardinal Larry Fitzgerald has his camp in Minneapolis at the new University of Minnesota football stadium. (writers note... I wish I could be writing that this was at the new Vikings stadium!) Part of what makes this camp unique is that it is for receivers, with some defensive backs also in attendance.

Fitzgerald, who has quickly lifted himself into the upper echelons of NFL pass catchers, invited the attendees, with participants such as Lee Evans, Greg Jennings, rookie Brian Robiskie and defensive backs DeAngelo Hall and Malcolm Jenkins at the two week camp. Fitzgerald also had participants over to his home in Eden Prairie Minnesota to kick back and relax after training.

What makes this camp further interesting is that Fitzgerald invited two guest instructors whose names will be immediately familiar to NFL followers. Jerry Rice and Cris Carter have joined in for a week each. All sessions include inter-active chalk talks along with emphasis on techniques and the whys and how's of pass receiving. The physical aspects of the receiver position is not forgotten as many of the wind sprints have proven to be very demanding. The training received should give all players a good start to training camp which is just around the corner.

My hope is that this will become a regular event rather than a one and done situation. I can see this expanding to include all the skill positions and who knows, maybe the big guys from both sides of the line will be doing something similar. Not catching passes of course, but technique drills including footwork and positioning etc. I can also see some enterprising sports broadcaster stepping up (hello ESPN, attention NFLN,) and offering Camp Fitz it as a mid summer telecast for information starved fans.
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