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Junior Anglers Clinic Gets Players And Kids Hooked On Fishing

Posted Apr 23, 2013

Ryan Tannehill among more than 20 Dolphins that took part.




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This sight never gets old, as more than 20 Miami Dolphins players spread out around the two lakes adjacent to the International Game Fishing Association’s Hall of Fame in Davie to fish with excited kids from the Boys and Girls Club of Miami-Dade NFL YET Center and the Boys and Girls Club of Broward County’s Lester H. White Center.

It’s the unofficial kickoff of Fins Weekend, which takes place May 16-18, and for a little over an hour these kids got to try their hands at hooking some fish while partnering with a Dolphins player. The sounds of their excited laughter when they actually reeled one in was priceless and it was difficult to distinguish who was more excited, the kids or the players.

“It’s fun to get out and do an event that most of these kids are not able to do everyday,” said quarterback Ryan Tannehill, who opted to find a spot far away from his teammates. “It’s a good change-up and something to get them outside, get them outdoors and hopefully a few of them might like it and it turns into something they can do on their downtime. I love fishing and I fish as much I can, some in my backyard and some in ponds and lakes and I get out on the ocean when I can.”

Mike Pouncey, Brandon Fields, John Jerry, Richie Incognito, Dan Carpenter, John Denney, Marcus Thigpen, Nolan Carroll, R.J. Stanford, Will Yeatman, Paul Soliai, Jonathan Martin, Pat Devlin, Brian Hartline, Austin Spitler, Lee Robinson, Nate Garner, Deandre Pressley and Jason Trusnik joined Tannehill at the event.

Jeff Peck heads up Fins Weekend and has watched this event grow over 17 years, but he was very impressed by the large player turnout and the enthusiasm exhibited.

“This is a great prelude to Fins Weekend and the fishing tournament and Publix has been a generous sponsor from day one,” Peck said. “It’s a chance for the kids to be one-on-one with the players and interact and have a really good time. It’s a good chance for the players to get their feet wet so to speak and we’ve raised millions and millions of dollars for local charities.”

There were plenty of veterans in the group among the players that knew what to expect once they cast their lines into the water, but the first-timers seemed a little anxious. Second-year offensive tackle Jonathan Martin has never fished before so he was in the same boat, figuratively speaking, as the kids.

“This is a new experience for me to so I just wanted to have fun and try to win something for these kids,” said Martin, who was drafted in the second round out of Stanford last year. “I think athletes should be role models for kids and if I had been given this opportunity as a kid I would have taken full advantage of it.”