Former Patriot Using Camp To Teach Lessons

In a time when "lockout" is more relevant than "training camp" in NFL news, it's interesting to hear about a player, a free agent at that, placing his focus on something aside from fame and fortune. For former Patriot Ellis Hobbs, the Ellis Hobbs III Football Camp has all of his attention.

Former Patriot Ellis Hobbs using camp to teach life lessons

Ellis Hobbs was drafted by the New England Patriots in the third round in 2005 NFL Draft. Hobbs stayed with the Patriots up until the 2009 NFL Draft in which he was traded to the Philadelphia Eagles for two fifth-round selections. Hobbs was a part of the 2007 Patriots team that finished the regular season 16-0 and later suffered a loss to the Giants in Super Bowl XLII. Hobbs is currently an unrestricted free agent after his tenure with the Philadelphia Eagles.

In speaking with Hobbs, his passion for the Ellis Hobbs III Football Camp is evident. In fact, it was infectious.

Hobbs explained, "These types of camps are so important because nowadays, kids' foundations are so based on the virtual gaming experience and rarely get any physical activity."

"Even though the sport entertains, it's also a great teacher of the dynamics of life." Hobbs stated.

The 2011 Ellis Hobbs III Football Camp, which is open to anyone between the ages of 6 -18 years old, will take place from July 18 - 22 at West Warwick High School Field in West Warwick, Rhode Island. A rather far drive from where Hobbs resides now in Atlanta, Georgia. When asked why he chose to hold the camp over 1,000 miles away, Hobbs emphasized the importance of the deep-rooted relationships he built over the years with his former Patriots teammates and also that there are so many fans in Rhode Island.

E. Hobbs
Hobbs was most recently part of the Eagles organization.
"It's really like a brotherhood among us players and we just all try to help each other out." Hobbs was recently in Bryan, Texas to help with the 4th Annual Ty Warren Life Skills & Drills Clinic. Warren, along with linebacker Jerod Mayo are just some of the players set that will lend a helping hand for the camp. The camp promises to give campers coaching wisdom from players who have experience at the highest level of the sport.

Hobbs jokingly added, "Whoever is running the camp, their job is to try to take as much ownership off of the guest coaches as possible. They are like kids, you just gotta give them a place to stay, feed them and they'll be happy."

The five day camp will run from 8:30 am to 5 pm, Monday through Friday. The camp will also provide lunch, drinks and snacks for all of the campers. As it is not contact camp, Hobbs wants to focus on the importance of honing the foundational skills of the player. These skills will range from things on the field to life skills and any other issues players may encounter in the future.
An interesting facet of his camp is his desire to embrace kids' interest in virtual gaming rather to be completely opposed to it.

"We'll actually have some televisions and some PlayStation 3 systems that the campers will have access to during their breaks."

Not bad for a football camp.

"We want the main function of this camp to be about doing things the right way. The right techniques, drills and all other tools to prevent injuries in what is typically a game of violence."

The daily activities of the camp include individual and small group instruction, special area skills development (on/off the field) and 7 on 7 flag football. Open to any interested spectators, the camp invites parents to come and watch their kids as they go through the daily activities some of their favorite Patriots players.

"I want parents to know that their kids will come out with so much more then when they came in to the camp."

And as far as life in the midst of the lockout?

"As a free agent, I don't really have a team to call home now so I've been able to focus on things like spending time with my family and taking care of myself." Hobbs joked, "This is the first time I've been able to enjoy a fourth of July, that includes all the eating."

When asked about where he'd like to play next, Hobbs explained, "Location is not an issue for my family and I. I'd like to go to a team that's on the brink - I've come from two successful organizations and I only have so much time left on my body to put it to work. Simply put, I just want to win."

Ellis Hobbs is one of several players who are using the time off due to the lockout in a very productive way. Whether it's coaching the proper technique for man-to-man coverage or having to deal with social issues, it's things like the Ellis Hobbs III Football Camp that is keeping the passion of football alive.

For more information on the Ellis Hobbs III Football Camp, click here.
If interested in registering for the camp, registration information can be found here.

Kisha Tapangan is a contributing writer for She also maintains her personal blog Necessary Roughness and can be found on Twitter @KishaT. Be sure to check back for regular updates by Kisha

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