Dolphins players greet fans at library
Kole Williamson had never met a professional football player before, so he was a little wide eyed when he handed his football and hat to Miami Dolphins offensive tackle Vernon Carey.
Williamson’s cousins and friends have met players from the San Diego Chargers and Tampa Bay Buccaneers, but it was all new to Kole, according to his aunt April Williamson.
“He was really excited,” she said. “Its been a lot of fun.”
Dolphins Charlie Anderson and Carey stopped by the Northwest Regional Library on Chiquita Boulevard Monday, signing autographs, answering questions from fans and spreading positive messages.
Anderson, a linebacker and University of Mississippi graduate, told the kids who wanted play football to keep at it.
“Its going to be tough. Probably the toughest game you’ll ever play,” he said, “but don’t limit yourself.”
Both Anderson and Carey have played seven years in the league.
While Anderson played for both the Dolphins and the Houston Texans, Carey has spent his entire life, and career, in Miami.
A Miami-Dade County native, Carey attended Miami Northwestern High School and, of course, the University of Miami where he was selected twice to the All-Big East second team before being drafted by the Dolphins in 2004.
Getting an education was important to Carey, he said, because it was important to set goals and then work to achieve them.
He told the hundreds of youngsters gathered in the library’s conference room that college was of the utmost importance, whether they played football or not.
“You got to go to college, you have to get your education so you can have options,” Carey said. “The more you learn, the more you earn.”
For Kole Williamson, 8, who is still a little ways from attending college, the thrill of meeting true NFL professionals and getting a few autographs was good enough.
“I’ve had a lot of fun,” he said. “My favorite part was when they signed my football.”