NFL players arrive in Israel next week for post-Super Bowl visit

The delegation is scheduled to hold an exhibition game against Israel’s national team in Jerusalem on February 18.

February 6, 2017 06:01
1 minute read.

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The Super Bowl may be over, but the game is still on for football fans in Israel.

A delegation of NFL players will arrive here next week as part of a campaign to showcase the country’s “true face” to the world, part of a joint initiative of the Strategic Affairs and Public Diplomacy Ministry and Tourism Ministry, Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan, who also serves as Strategic Affairs minister, announced Sunday.

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The group of 11 players, which will arrive next Monday, will tour Israel for a week, including visits to Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and the Dead Sea.

“There is great importance to the visit of a delegation of NFL stars to Israel,” said Erdan. “I’m sure that this visit will be a great experience for them and that it will give them a balanced picture of Israel opposite the deceptive campaign being waged against Israel across the world. The players will show their tens of millions of fans the true face of Israel. We are leading a campaign against the delegitimization of Israel and part of this campaign is to arrange visits of celebrities in different fields, including sports.”

Among those visiting will be former Super Bowl champions Michael Bennett and Cliff Avril, as well as Bennett’s brother Martellus, who was set to play for the New England Patriots in Sunday’s Super Bowl against the Atlanta Falcons.

Others in the group include: Delanie Walker, Mychal Kendricks, Kenny Stills, Cameron Jordan, Calais Campbell, Carlos Hyde, Dan Williams and Justin Forsett.

The delegation is scheduled to hold an exhibition game against Israel’s national team in Jerusalem on February 18.

“Football players are a source of inspiration for the entire US population. I’m sure that after their experiences in the country, they will become loyal tourism ambassadors of Israel,” said Tourism Minister Yariv Levin.

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