One trip to Hawaii last month to play in his first Pro Bowl pales in comparison to the trip Miami Dolphins punter
Fields, a two-time nominee for the Walter Payton Man of the Year award, was one of three NFL players chosen to serve as ambassadors on a week-long tour throughout the Middle East to boost the morale of U.S troops in the region. They are continuing an NFL-USO tradition that goes back almost a half century when a group of players visited Vietnam and other parts of Southeast Asia for the first time in 1966.
Joining Fields on this tour are Washington Redskins wide receiver Pierre Garcon and New Orleans Saints and former Miami Hurricane tight end Jimmy Graham. This is an opportunity to let the soldiers, sailors and airmen still protecting our country’s freedom know just how much they are appreciated back home.
“It means a great deal to have the opportunity to go overseas to visit the troops. It is a way for me to show my appreciation, knowing all they are sacrificing fighting for our freedoms and the liberties of other people throughout the world,” said Fields, who also won the team’s Nat More Community Service Award in 2012. “I feel honored to get to spend some time with them and hopefully bring them a little piece of home since they are stationed overseas away from their families for long periods of time.”
Making a difference off the field has become commonplace for Fields, as he participates in every Dolphins community event imaginable, specifically the Miami Dolphins Foundation Fishing and Golf Tournaments, the annual turkey giveaway and the “Lift Up America Food Giveaway.” Besides giving selflessly of his time to team initiatives, Fields and his wife Katie started the Brandon and Katie Fields Youth Fitness Fund in 2010. Its focus is on health, fitness and a positive attitude while also promoting physical activity and good health among the children in the community.
Fields has established himself as one of the elite punters in the league since being taken by the Dolphins in the seventh round of the 2007 NFL Draft and is only the second punter in team history to make it to the Pro Bowl. Reggie Roby was the first back in 1984 and also made it in 1989. He is ranked third all-time in NFL history in career gross punt average at 46.8, which ranks first in franchise history, but he has shown a sincere desire to affect history more in ways like this.
Fields joins a list of Dolphins icons that include Hall-of-Famers Don Shula and Larry Csonka that have visited troops abroad on NFL-USO tours in Afghanistan, Bosnia, Iraq, Japan, Korea, Kuwait and Somalia.