HINSDALE – Like Peyton Manning, Tom Brady and Colin Kaepernick, Luke Adams will face his own high-pressure situation this weekend.
While the NFL superstar quarterbacks will be playing in playoff games this weekend, Adams, a Hinsdale resident, will be one of 40 young athletes from across the country competing in the NFL Punt, Pass and Kick national finals near Denver on Saturday.
The 40 finalists advanced to Saturday's national finals through local, sectional and team championship competitions held throughout the NFL regular season. The top four scorers in each age group from across the country qualified as national finalists. Adams is representing the Chicago Bears in the Boys 8-9 group at the competition, which will take place at Valor Christian High School in Highlands Ranch, Colo.
On Saturday, competitors in five age divisions will compete separately, with the top scorer in each group crowned as a national champion. All participants will launch two punts, two passes and two kicks with scores based on distance and accuracy (in feet). The best score from each activity is tabulated to determine the athlete’s total.
A special on-field Punt, Pass and Kick award presentation featuring the winners will air after the third quarter of Sunday's Denver Broncos-San Diego Chargers game, which will be televised on CBS.
“The NFL Punt, Pass and Kick program gives girls and boys around the country a way to stay healthy and active and to learn the basic skills of football,” USA Football Executive Director Scott Hallenbeck said. “We are pleased to see so many of our young fans learning about football through this program.”
NFL Punt, Pass and Kick is celebrating its 52nd anniversary this year. Several NFL stars – including Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterbacks Troy Aikman and Dan Marino competed in the Punt, Pass and Kick program as youngsters.