Shane Boyd says he thanks the Lord every day that he is a player in the National Football League. He also tries to make sure he remembers how much seeing or meeting a NFL player means to youngsters.
"I always liked talking to kids. I feel like it is your obligation to meet and talk to kids. There are certain big-name players out there who do not do everything they need to do with kids. I don't know every athlete's schedule, but athletes have an obligation to give back, especially the professional athletes," said Boyd, the former UK quarterback who now plays for the Arizona Cardinals
. "I do what I can. Our people (with the Cardinals) have to pull me back sometimes because I want to get to every kid I can. I know when I was a kid if I didn't get an autograph, I was crushed. That's why I always start with the youngest and work my way up. I make sure I get those young kids first. I do what I can do touch kids and seeing joy in their faces brings joy to my heart and makes me happy."
That's one reason Boyd will be working the Dennis Johnson Football Clinic at the University of Kentucky July 20-21. However, he'll also be there even though he leaves July 22 for Arizona because of his friendship with Johnson.
"First and foremeost, he was a man who always took care of me and looked out for me at UK, and even in high school we bonded. Dennis is a great person everybody knows that. When he calls, I will always be there to help him," Boyd said. "If I can help him help kids, I am going to do it.
"I want to help kids who have aspirations of playing at the next level just like I did when I was young. I would always go to camps so NFL guys could coach me up. It's just a great experience to be on the field with guys like that when you are young. Now that I am one of those guys in the NFL, I not only want to help Dennis, but I also want to keep helping kids."