Shalom Life | June 18, 2015

Pro Football Players to Touchdown in Israel

Patriots owner Robert Kraft to land in Israel with 19 football hall-of-famers

By: B. Shane Morganstein

Published: June 17th, 2015 in Sports » Israel

Photo: Green Bay Packers great Jim Taylor


The “Touchdown in Israel – Mission of Excellence” program will have 19 members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame visit Israel this Thursday for a week of events including meeting local Israeli football players.

The week of festivities will include Jewish philanthropist and New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft, as well as Israel’s ambassador to the US Ron Dermer.

Kraft and the Kraft family have been sponsoring football in Israel since 1999, with the building of the Kraft Family Stadium in Jerusalem. Dermer is also a former quarterback for the Israeli (non-tackle) national team, and is in the American Football in Israel Hall of Fame.

Some of the players reported to be attending the weeklong celebration include Green Bay Packers great Jim Taylor, former Patriots and Jets running back Curtis Martin, former Baltimore Colts wide receiver Raymond Berry, and Kansas City Chiefs defensive lineman Curley Culp.

This Thursday, the Israeli Football League (IFL) champions the Judean Rebels will play against Israel’s new national tackle team in a game of scrimmage, where the former pro players will act as “honorary coaches” on the sidelines.

On Sunday, Kraft and Dermer will be joined by Pro Football Hall of Fame President David Baker and American Football in Israel President Steve Leibowitz at Kraft Stadium. The Hall-of-Famers will also lead breakout sessions, “where they will individually share football tips, stories, and pose for photos with Israeli players and fans,” according to a press release.

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