YOUNGSTERS FROM ACROSS THE COUNTRY COMPETE IN NFL FLAG NATIONAL TOURNAMENT OF CHAMPIONS PRIOR TO PRO BOWL KICKOFF ON JANUARY 31
Before NFL greats take the field for the Pro Bowl on Sunday, January 31, the NFL will celebrate its stars of the future at the 2009 NFL FLAG National Tournament of Champions. For the first time, the tournament will take place on Pro Bowl Sunday at Game Day Fan Plaza, the NFL's festival area adjacent to Dolphin Stadium.
Included in the field are three teams that emerged from a qualifier hosted by the Oakland Raiders.
"The Oakland Raiders were pleased to host a Regional Flag Football tournament as part of our ongoing commitment to youth initiatives," said Oakland Raiders Chief Executive Amy Trask. "We wish all of the participants the best of luck."
Game Day Fan Plaza will feature musical acts, player appearances, autograph opportunities, the largest assortment of NFL merchandise, and refreshments. It is open free of charge on Pro Bowl Sunday and to ticket holders on Super Bowl Sunday.
More than 130,000 youngsters across the country played NFL FLAG this year. Twenty-four teams advanced to the National Championship tournament. All teams qualified by winning their NFL FLAG regional tournament in October and November. NFL FLAG teaches values and life skills on and off the field to more than 130,000 children each year. NFL FLAG is a non-contact version of traditional football and is offered for boys and girls ages 5-17 in cities across the country. The program emphasizes safety, fun, teamwork, self-esteem, discipline and goal-setting.
"We're excited to celebrate flag football and all the talented players in a new way this year as part of the festivities leading up to the 2010 Pro Bowl," said NFL Senior Vice President of Events Frank Supovitz. "The NFL FLAG National Tournament of Champions is a great opportunity to recognize the importance of dedication and team work, and to applaud the boys and girls who have worked so hard to get to the finals. We are pleased to salute them prior to the Pro Bowl."
Teams will compete for titles in 9-11-Year Old Co-ed; 12-14-Year-Old Boys; and 12-14-Year-Old Girls divisions. All participating teams will be recognized on-field prior to Pro Bowl kickoff, and all teams will receive tickets to the game.