Kenyan Drake Making Global Impact, One Smile at a Time

September 11th, 2019

Dolphins fans, far and wide, were all smiles when Kenyan Drake sprinted into the end zone as time expired to stun the Patriots last December. Over the summer, the fourth-year running back capitalized on the lasting popularity of the play since hailed as the “Miami Miracle” to put smiles on the faces of hundreds of children who may have never seen him play a single down.

Drake has served as an ambassador for Smile Train, a nonprofit organization that provides free cleft and palate repair surgery in more than 85 developing countries, for the last two years. During that time, he’s visited hospitals and local homes in Mexico and Brazil, hosted a cocktail dinner in downtown Miami, and led a three-mile walk in Long Island, N.Y. to raise awareness for the charity.

During his recent trip to Rio de Janeiro treatment centers, the 25-year-old, in conjunction with Smile Train, came up with a way to utilize his elevated NFL platform to get more people involved in the cause. He posted an offer to his 150,000-plus Twitter followers: anyone who’d donate at least $15 to his fundraiser over a five-day span would receive an autographed photo of his biggest football moment.

With Week 2 bringing the Patriots back to Miami for the first time since Drake’s miraculous score, Dolfans NYC is using the opportunity to assist his philanthropic initiative. On Sep. 15, Slattery’s Midtown Pub will hold a pledge drive and raffle off memorabilia, collect unused dental items and make “get well soon” cards that will be distributed to children who’ve recently undergone cleft operations. All proceeds will go directly to Smile Train.

Drake, who also wore custom shoes representing the charity during the NFL’s “My Cause My Cleats” campaign last season, was inspired to join Smile Train after learning about its mission and recognizing how he could make a difference.

“A smile is the first thing you notice, and I just like to use my opportunity to go out there and really help people see their potential,” he said. “I feel like I’m a champion for the vulnerable and for people who don’t have a lot of the things that people in other countries may have just because of the circumstances they were born in.”

Drake, a Smile Train ambassador, hosted a Miami event to help raise awareness and funds for children with untreated clefts. (Photo credit: Kenyan Drake / Twitter)

While touring international medical centers, he observed surgeries first-hand and helped spread positivity to children and their parents.

“When you go out there and give time and effort,” he said, “it gives them the ability to have a great (experience).”

In the days following his social-media campaign, the contributions, from the minimum $15 to over $250, kept pouring in, so Drake stayed busy signing in his free time, inscribing his name across stacks and stacks of 8×10 prints. There were too many to count, he said, but consider that just last week, he prepared the final 500 photos for delivery.

Drake set a $10,000 goal, enough to cover up to 40 surgeries; he raised nearly $14,000, and proceeded to personally match the total.

“I wanted to do that with my own funds to just show how invested I am in it,” he said. “I feel like my (position) definitely gives me the ability to impact the world.”

Among the prizes in Dolfans NYC’s upcoming raffle is a Dolphins mini helmet signed by No. 32. In addition, for every donated item and made card, members will receive a separate raffle ticket for a chance to win a football signed by Jason Taylor and Zach Thomas at the end of the season.

“It’s pretty cool to just be involved in that,” Drake said. “I feel that it’s definitely something worthwhile.”

Dolphins Promote Harmony, Inclusion Though Football Unites Program

September 9th, 2019

It’s just past 10 o’clock on Sunday morning, three hours before the Dolphins will kick off the 2019 season against the Ravens, and the North East plaza at Hard Rock Stadium is bustling with activity.

At the team’s fourth-annual Football Unites CommUNITY Tailgate, large overhead fans are whirling at full capacity, while a DJ shuffles between mid-1990s and early 2000s hip-hop classics – 2Pac and Ja Rule are the biggest crowd-pleasers – and radio-friendly Drake hits.

A behemoth foosball table in the right corner clicks and clacks, and to the left, an assembly line of young members from Davie Police Athletic League (PAL) and 5000 Role Models packs kits with hygiene supplies to distribute to those affected by Hurricane Dorian in the Bahamas.

Hot and cold food stations on the opposite end of the plaza are stocked with hamburgers, salads, chips and an assortment of sugary treats, and adjacent refrigerators are crammed with water bottles and soda cans.

“Our owner, Stephen Ross, our players and coaches paid for this tailgate with the idea of bringing four to five groups that would’ve never thought of connecting in their regular walks of life,” said Jason Jenkins, Dolphins Senior Vice President of Communications and Community Affairs. “South Florida is a melting pot of a lot of intersections, and we want to make sure that we’re reflective of all the groups that are coming here.”

The initiative is part of a series of community service projects planned for the 2019 season, which also include ride-along programs designed to foster positive communication between police and youth, as well as cultural tours through a partnership with the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau.

While some of the Dolphins’ previous social-progress leaders, including Kenny Stills, a three-time Nat Moore Community Service Award winner, are no longer on the team, Raekwon McMillan, Bobby McCain, Jerome Baker, Albert Wilson and Xavien Howard are among the players who’ve carried on the legacy of their predecessors.

Dolphins alumni, including tailgate attendees Nate Garner, an offensive tackle from 2008 to 2014, and Ed Perry, a tight end and long snapper from 1997 to 2004, have also continued to be prominently involved in efforts to unite people of different races, genders, sexual orientations and identities through sports.

“Our players have been extremely supportive and active, not only financially, but with their time to the program,” Jenkins said. “We’re stewards in this community and this brand. We have this commitment and responsibility to make sure we can make South Florida united, make South Florida healthy and make South Florida more educated, as well.

“Our owner has been there every step of the way. (Vice Chairman, President and CEO) Tom Garfinkel really gave us the opportunity to lay out this vision, and it’s great that (we’re) seeing it come to fruition each and every day.”

Since its inception in 2015, the tailgate has grown organically, primarily through word of mouth, from 10 participating organizations to over 60.

Jenkins believes that’s only the beginning.

“Our capacity is limitless in what we want to do,” he said. “We believe in humanity, we believe in football having the ability to bring people together and we’re very fortunate to be able to provide these platforms to bring our youth together.”

Football Season Begins, 10th Anniversary Merch & Giving Back

September 5th, 2019

This is a very different Miami Dolphins team from the last time we updated our website. The Dolphins have had a full 25% roster overhaul in the short time since we first put #MetLifeTakeover tickets on sale. The team that is suiting up this Sunday vs the Ravens is going to have a lot of new faces and may not be the juggernaut we expect from the Miami Dolphins, but we’ve been through tough seasons once or twice before and I am hopeful that looking back in a few years this will be the best thing to happen to us since we drafted Dan Marino.

The reason we started Dolfans NYC is because football is more fun when you are watching it with other people. The wins are better, but maybe more importantly, the losses are a lot better. You get to commiserate (and perhaps get very drunk) with people who know what you are going through. There aren’t a lot of places where you can make new friends as an adult but I know there are Dolphins fans that I will talk to for the rest of my life because of this club.

10 years ago when we founded Dolfans NYC we expected a few dozen people to walk into our bar Third & Long but by kickoff there was a line out the door. A few years later Third and Long sadly closed and we moved to Slattery’s Midtown Pub and once again on week one we packed the place despite being three times the size of our old home. The #MetLifeTakeover started with 35 people and grew to 70 and then 200 then 750 and it’s averaged over 1000 for the last 5 years. It’s been one hell of a ride and despite the team on the field I am very excited for our 10th season.

To celebrate our 10th season we have a BUNCH of new merch designed by one of our members Jackie who moved upstate and as a going away present made a bunch of stuff for us. You might have seen our 10 Years logo already but you haven’t seen these new shirts. We created a MIAMI NORTH shirt and tank top in the Miami Vice colorway that will look as good in your all white Air Force Ones in NYC as it will walking down South Beach in flip flops. We also have a 10 Years iron on patch for your jerseys and we have two new hats that are in the works.

Miami North

For one week only (well more like 10 days) this stuff will be available to purchase online. Our regular merch store is closed while we are selling #MetLifeTakeover tickets because it’s impossible for us to deal with both at once, but next Sunday I am going to bring everything I need to ship home from Slattery’s and mail it out the next day. I don’t have time to be shipping constantly, but I can dedicate and afternoon to it. So if you want some of our new merch and you don’t live in the area here’s your chance to get some of our merch. We have our normal Dolfans NYC stuff in the shop as well. And remember, all proceeds go to charity. SHOP HERE.

Speaking of charity, for our 10th anniversary season, our goal is to donate $10,000 to charity and we will be making a donation to a different charity every week of the season. This Sunday we are doing a huge fundraiser for the Jason Taylor Foundation. They sent us a full sized Hall of Fame helmet signed by Jason that we will be raffling. We also have a signed ball that we will be auctioning off at Slattery’s. If you can’t make it to Slattery’s we are selling raffle tickets online as well. If you want a chance to win the helmet send $20 for every 5 tickets to DolfansNYC@gmail.com using PayPal. We will be drawing tickets during the 4th quarter of the Ravens game live on our Instagram so you can watch at home to see if you win.

Jason Taylor Signed Helmet

Lastly, I wanted to mention that after emailing them for months we finally heard back from the Giants about trying to buy group tickets. We don’t have anything set in stone because they have been very slow responding, but it looks like we are going to be able to buy a small block of tickets in the lower level. We will be selling them for $150 which is a lot more than our Jets seats, but at least we get to be near the field for a change. If you don’t have your Giants tickets yet, you might want to hold off for a bit. Feel free to email us (DolfansNYC@gmail.com) to get on our email list when the tickets go on sale. For now, get your Jets tickets here!

Okay, that’s it! Sorry for the longer than normal post, but just so excited for our 10th season of Dolfans NYC! See you guys on Sunday! Phins up!

 

 

2019 #MetLifeTakeover Tickets Are On Sale!

July 30th, 2019

This is what you have been waiting for! For the 10th anniversary of Dolfans NYC we are doing not one, but TWO #MetLifeTakeover events!

The big one of course is the Jets game December 8th. It’s our 10th anniversary celebration and such a huge deal for us. We are pulling out all the stops. We hope this is our biggest year ever. We will have exclusive merch for the Takeover, are giving out 1000 thunder sticks and we hope to have some special guests for the tailgate. We even got a bigger discount on tickets this year year if you order by August 15th. With the early bird discount the Jets game tickets are only $60!

The Giants game is December 15th and while we ARE NOT offering game tickets, we are doing a huge tailgate. Our catering partners Urban Tailgate are doing back to back weeks with us and if you go to both tailgates you can save a ton of money using our exclusive coupons.

We are also offering round trip transportation to both games from our bar Slattery’s Midtown Pub. Unfortunately prices have gone up a little bit, but with the $10 early bird discount on tickets, you can still get to and from the game plus a ticket for $100. Plus we will free have bagels and coffee waiting for you when you get to Slattery’s.

And remember Dolfans NYC is a non-profit, so any money we raise from these events goes back to charity. For our 10th season our goal is to donate $10,000 to charity and we need your help!

Click here to get your tickets to the #MetLifeTakeover!

https://vimeo.com/305260152

2018 #MetLifeTakeover Video

December 10th, 2018

It’s finally here! The 2018 #MetLifeTakeover video took us forever to finish, but I think the results are worth waiting for. For the second year in a row the video was directed/edited by RizeOptix and hosted by comedian Oscar Collazos. We loved their work on the 2017 Takeover video and we were glad they could do it again. We have actually teamed up with RizeOptix again to work on something special for our 10th anniversary next year, but don’t tell anyone!

The video is of course a recap of the 2018 #MetLifeTakeover during our week 2 win against the Jets at MetLife Stadium. It features footage from our Saturday night pre-party at Slattery’s Midtown Pub, our massive tailgate and we got some pretty amazing footage from inside the game as well. In past years we didn’t have a ton of footage from inside the stands but this year we got some great stuff including footage from across the stadium where you can see how fully we took over the upper deck.

The video includes interviews with Dolphins alumni Mark Clayton, Mark Duper, Kim Bokamper, Joe Rose and Nat Moore who were all at the tailgate. Additionally there are interviews with Jason Jenkins who is one of our biggest supporters in the Dolphins organization, musician Solo D and a bunch of Dolfans. We unfortunately had to cut some of the fan interviews because we had so many, but you might see them as Instagram videos next year!

Before we get to the video I just wanted to give some shoutouts: The Dolphins organization for always supporting our club, the Jason Taylor Foundation for donating a signed JT jersey for our raffle (We ended up raising $2000 for the Foundation!), Urban Tailgate for doing all the hard work for our pregame party, Sailor Jerry for providing a ton of rum, Slattery’s as always for all the help on a day where we are actively taking people AWAY from their bar and of course everyone who came out, supported us, spread the word or donated anything to the charity. We have raised tens of thousands of dollars over the 10 years we have been doing this and we couldn’t do any of it without you guys.

See you guys next year for the 10th anniversary of Dolfans NYC! We will be doing TWO #MetLifeTakeovers as the Dolphins play both the Jets and the Giants next year!

Okay, it’s video time! Please share this with all your fellow Dolfans and let us know what you think! Oh, and make sure you watch until the very end!

 

Away from Cameras, Dolphins Give Back to Communities

November 22nd, 2018
Kenny Stills signs autographs for young fans. (The Palm Beach Post)

For Dolphins players, the job of a professional athlete doesn’t end when the gameday cameras stop rolling and the pads are hung up in the lockers.

During their free time, many give back to the communities that raised them, using their platforms and voices to make a difference in the lives of less-privileged families.

In addition to participating in nearly every philanthropic event the team has hosted since he arrived in South Florida four years ago, wide receiver Kenny Stills – a nominee for the 2017 NFL Walter Payton Man of the Year Award – has spent each off day during the season working on innumerable charitable efforts.

“On any Tuesday, if you try to get a hold of him, you’re going to have to wait until five or six o’clock because he’s doing community stuff all day,” said Dolphins Head Coach Adam Gase. “I’ve been impressed with how he’s made himself available, how much he tries to do.”

In the coming weeks, Stills plans to give away presents on “10 Days of Stillsmas,” an initiative he personally launched last season to spread more joy to his fans.

“This will be the second year we try and sponsor families that need help,” said Stills, who personally selects and pays for the presents. “We usually do a meal and then give gifts for 10 kids. We’re in the process of finding and selecting the families. I’m sure there are other things that will come up for Thanksgiving, too. I’ll be sure to share those things on my social media.”

Nearly a year ago, linebacker Kiko Alonso watched helplessly as Puerto Rico, his father’s birthplace, was devastated by Hurricane Maria. No. 47 immediately started a fundraising campaign to help victims in both Puerto Rico and Miami, with a goal of $150,000. Alonso pledged the first $25,000, which was subsequently matched by the Miami Dolphins Foundation; in all, the relief fund generated over $165,000.

The recovery efforts are still ongoing, and Alonso stresses the importance of lending a helping hand, whether it’s for those impacted by natural disasters or unable to find food and shelter in local townships.

“There’s just people out there who need help everywhere, and there are a lot of people out there who aren’t as fortunate as some of us,” he said. “Everybody in the NFL is very blessed, so I think it’s important for anybody in our shoes to give back. I think it’s just the least we can do.”

Hosting food drives, supporting Boys and Girls Clubs or working with police departments may not generate as many headlines as game-winning touchdowns, but players recognize that even a gesture as small as tossing a football with a group of kids can leave a lasting impression.

“You always want to pay it forward,” said safety T.J. McDonald, who has regularly partaken in team community efforts, including the Dade vs. Broward All-Star Game and the Dolphins Cancer Challenge, as well as numerous other events during his time with the Rams.

“We get a lot of fame … (for) what we do and who we are, (but) we wouldn’t be who we are without other people. So, it’s very important to be that positive influence that some of us had when we were young. Just being that face there, it lets them know that it’s possible. That was big for guys like me growing up.”

Cornerback Walt Aikens understands the importance of having that kind of support and guidance first-hand.

Beginning at age six, the Charlotte, N.C. native played youth football for the Police Athletic/Activities League, which aims to strengthen character, build bridges between police and communities, and prevent juvenile crime through recreational, mentoring and educational opportunities.

Aikens credits the organization for playing a critical role in his on- and off-field development, and for keeping him on the straight and narrow path as an adolescent.

“It helped me in so many ways,” he said. “What PAL does is help kids like me stay out of trouble.”

In May, the 27-year-old was named an official spokesperson for National PAL, and proudly serves as an inspiration for impressionable children – including his younger cousin – who faces similar kinds of hardships or roadblocks.

“I can now go and talk to kids all over the place and just share my testimony with them, because it wasn’t always easy,” he said. “I persevered and made it to where I am today, and I just want to give back to them and let them know they can do whatever they want to do. It doesn’t even have to be sports, it can be anything.”

As Stills explains, the opportunity to impact the lives of others isn’t just something that comes with the territory of being an NFL star.

Said No. 10: “It’s everything.”

Dolfans NYC Vs. Green Bay

November 13th, 2018

When the schedule came out this year the first thing I did was book a trip to Green Bay with a bunch of other members of Dolfans NYC. As the season went on I found out more and more of our crew was going. We had at least 20 people who went but there were probably a lot more than that. When word got out that we were going people kept asking us if we were doing some sort of “Lambeau Takeover” and while we would never disrespect such a holy place as Lambeau like that we did want to throw a tailgate there, but less than a week out we still didn’t have any actual plans. That’s where Ace came in.

Andrew Abramson who you might remember as a Dolphins reporter from the Palm Beach Post reached out to us on Twitter about tailgating. He heard a guy named Ace had a great location about a block away from the stadium so I reached out to Ace to see what his plans were. He is the manager of a store called Extreme Audio in Manitowoc, WI and asked his boss if when the Dolphins played the Packers he could use the Green Bay location to throw a tailgate. Extreme Audio serves as a parking lot during Packers games so his boss said as long as he could still sell the parking spaces Ace could tailgate there.

It seemed like a perfect solution so we offered to buy 7 parking spaces that we could tailgate in as well as some money to pay for food. I reached out to Sailor Jerry and got them to send us some rum to make spiked hot apple cider. I posted on our social about the parking spaces and sold all of them in advance of the game in 24 hours and got the word out to hundreds of Dolphins fans who had made the trip. Ace did all the hard work and got all the food and booze and we went from a small tailgate into a massive event in just five days!

The game itself was a disaster but the Lambeau experience was so amazing. I honestly enjoyed the misery of sitting on cold ass metal bleachers in freezing weather and cheering on my team even though only half of them were there because of all the injuries. The fans in Green Bay are great and they understand we are there to appreciate Lambeau and the amazing history of that holiest of football locations. We got to do a tour of Lambeau the night before and it was really amazing. Every bit of the trip was great except for the actual game.

Oh, I totally forgot. We went by the team hotel after the Lambeau tour and we talked to a couple of players (Stills and Asiata) but we also ran into Tom Garfinkel who for some reason wanted a photo with us (Ace and I) and we ended up hanging out with Nat Moore at the bar and he told us some great stories and argued with us about what players belonged in the Ring of Honor. He also kept telling us about how great the #MetLifeTakeover was which is pretty much the greatest compliment we could get. He was saying how much it means to the players when all you can hear is LET’S GO DOLPHINS in the 4th quarter. Such a fun night.

So yeah, our trip was a great success, I just wish I could say the same for the Dolphins. We also ended up raising $800 for the Green Bay Toys 4 Tots at the tailgate! Thanks to everyone who chipped in, brought some booze, or just hung out. I heard it was the biggest contingent of away fans ever at Lambeau. That’s probably not true, but I am willing to pretend!

Now check out all the photos from the tailgate (and a few from the Lambeau tour) below!

Dolfans NYC @ Green Bay

DolfansNYC Tailgate in Green Bay

November 7th, 2018

Every football fan should go to Lambeau once in their lifetime and every 8 years Dolphins fans get the chance to see their team play in the football world’s Mecca.  As soon as the schedule came out a group of Dolfans NYC members set our plans in motion. Since then our group has grown and I found out that a bunch of our other members were going as well. When I mentioned we were going on Twitter Dolphins fans all over the country reached out to me about what we were doing for a tailgate. Well, we have finally figured that out!

Former Palm Beach Post Dolphins writer Andrew Abramson reached out to me about a friend of his living in Wisconsin who had a perfect spot for a tailgate. Andrew was a #MetLifeTakeover regular when he was covering the team and knew we were going and wanted to connect. He put me in touch with his friend Ace who got us access to a store called Extreme Audio (757 Mike McCarthy Way) that is only one block from the stadium!  The store acts as a parking lot for Lambeau on Game Day, but the owner is willing to sell us the parking spaces in advance.

Between Andrew, Ace and Dolfans NYC we have purchased 6 spaces that we are going to leave empty for the tailgate as well as a couple of spaces that we are going to be parking in. If you want to park in the lot as well (way cheaper than actual Lambeau parking) email ace@extremeaudio.com and let him know ASAP. There are only about a dozen spots left so first come first serve!

As far as the actual tailgate goes, we will be kicking off at noon, with the game starting at 3:25pm we should have plenty of time to pregame. We have 50 burgers, 50 brats and some vegetarian options. We are gonna have some beer and water, but please BYOB because we aren’t going to have enough for everyone. The tailgate is technically free but we ask everyone to make some sort of donation. After we recoup the funds we spent on food/parking all left over money will be donated to Toys 4 Tots. You can also bring an unwrapped toy as payment as well. Extreme Audio does a Toys 4 Tots fundraiser every year so we figured this was a perfect way to thank them for hosting us and to do some good for the Green Bay community. If you want to donate directly please PayPal us at dolfansnyc@gmail.com. I think a $10 per person donation would be perfect.

So to sum it all up, every Dolphins fan is invited to party with us before the Green Bay game. If you want to eat our food bring $10 or a toy for the charity drive. If you want to park near us make sure you email Ace ASAP. And if you want to drink, please BYOB. Obviously anyone who wants to bring other snacks and stuff we would love it. This should be an amazing experience no matter what happens on the field. Stay warm out there!

Lambeau

 

 

 

Flo Rida Makes Hard Rock Stadium His House

October 24th, 2018
Chart-topping rapper Flo Rida performed at a Dolphins game for the first time in his career.

Backstage in a nondescript dressing room, past the players’ locker rooms at the end of a winding, field-level corridor, Flo Rida scans the crowd from behind his diamond-encrusted, orange Gucci sunglasses and motions his two dancers to join him at each side for a post-concert interview.

Over the years, the Grammy-award-nominee has performed at countless sports venues, but there’s no doubt that playing a medley of his biggest hits during Sunday’s halftime show in front of his hometown fans, decked in an aqua No. 1 jersey bearing his name, is special.

Or as the “My House” rapper himself calls it, “epic.”

“To be home in the 305, I anticipated coming out here for a very long time,” he said. “I think this may be a pre-Super Bowl halftime performance for the Dolphins, you know what I’m saying? We have it down in the 305. It was so much fun.”

Born and raised in neighboring Carol City, Fla. – located 15 miles outside of Miami – the rapper, singer and songwriter was discovered by 2 Live Crew’s Fresh Kid Ice, who signed him as his hype man and later featured him as a guest on his 2004 album, “Freaky Chinese.”

Just three years later, Flo Rida’s breakout, chart-topping single, “Low” – the most-downloaded song of the decade – made him a household name. He’s since become one of the best-selling artists in the world, topping one billion plays on Spotify, with dozens of infectious party anthems.

His international success and penchant for penning smash hits have allowed him to celebrate with the Super Bowl-champion Denver Broncos in 2016, as well as kick off the 2017 NFL season at Gillette Stadium, but if there was any doubt his football allegiance still lies with the Dolphins, the 39-year-old quickly puts that to rest.

The locally-born-and-raised musician lists off a handful of his childhood favorites with a wide grin – Dan Marino, Mark Duper and Mark Clayton – and has close ties to a Coral Gables High School graduate and University of Miami alumnus currently suiting up for the Dolphins.

“Frank Gore, that’s my boy,” the rapper said. “I said, ‘What’s up?’ to him when we were out there on the field. It’s always a pleasure to see hometown (players) out here, representing, as well.”

Like all Dolphins fans, Flo Rida has enjoyed the team’s early-season success, and hopes that the next time he returns to the big stage in the Sunshine State, his favorite team will be playing in Super Bowl LIV at Hard Rock Stadium.

“This is something that, being a fan of the Dolphins, we always anticipate and we want to happen, so I’m definitely enjoying (this season),” he said. “We pray that the Dolphins are in the Super Bowl.”

Dolphins Stars Appreciate ‘Awesome’ Dolfans NYC Reception

September 27th, 2018
Dolphins DB Minkah Fitzpatrick Celebrates a defensive stop.
Photo: Allen Eyestone/The Palm Beach Post

A native of Old Bridge Township, N.J., Dolphins defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick expected to see around 30 close friends and family members in the lower-level seats at nearby MetLife Stadium.

The standout rookie didn’t envision over 1,000 aqua-and-orange-decked fans cheering for him and his teammates from the upper deck, their raucous reception rendering the return to his home state even more special.

“It was awesome,” Fitzpatrick said. “I saw a lot of people out there. At one point, they were chanting, ‘Go Dolphins!’ That was really cool hearing them, and that somebody at the stadium started that chant. It was a lot of fun.”

Fellow first-year player Jerome Baker, in awe of the inescapable crowd noise, reached out to Renzo Sheppard, Dolphins Football Communications Manager, to find out why Miami had such an overwhelming presence on an opposing team’s home turf.

“Even just pulling in, you could see the tailgating, you could see our fans were there, and I was just surprised by that,” Baker said. “Being that far north and having our fans there, it’s just a blessing. In the NFL, I really didn’t expect our fans to travel that well … I asked Zo, he ended up telling me (about Dolfans NYC), and I just decided to say something.”

“We feed off of their energy just like they feed off of ours,” Baker continued. “When we – the defense – were up there doing our thing, our fans were yelling, too. I wouldn’t say it felt like a home game, but you could definitely feel our fans.”

For two of the Dolphins’ top offensive stars, the ringing celebrations following Miami’s scoring drives didn’t go unrecognized.

“Yeah, yeah, yeah!” exclaimed wide receiver Albert Wilson when asked if he heard the cheers after his second-quarter touchdown catch gave Miami a 14-0 lead. “After the game, I did a message to everybody who came out. It was great to get so many Dolphins fans on the road. When you get there and you quiet the crowd, and you have your fans going loud, it definitely gives us a spark.”

Running back Kenyan Drake, who found the end zone on a six-yard run in the first quarter, echoed a similar sentiment.

“It was good to score one in front of the many fans we had up there,” he said. “Dolphins fans travel anywhere and everywhere, especially for a divisional-rivalry game such as the Jets. I feel like they make it a key thing to go up there and really try to pack out MetLife Stadium. It was cool just feeling that vibe when I was up there.”

Drake, much like his other teammates, reiterated his appreciation for the support, and hopes to capitalize on the positive momentum as the Dolphins head to Foxboro for a pivotal matchup against the Patriots on Sunday.

What’s his message to Dolfans NYC?

“Let’s keep it going! We’re 3-0, baby. Just enjoy the ride.”

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