SEVEN HILLS, Ohio — An intricate handshake here, a big sidearm hug there, and even some lighthearted chippy banter. That's how Sunday evening started for Cleveland Browns safety Grant Delpit. But he wasn't hanging out with his teammates—he was spending time with the local community as he made an effort to make a lasting impact on the next generation.
Delpit partnered with The Goldie Legacy, an organization that helps athletes like Delpit in "igniting their capacity to serve others, leveraging their talents to inspire positive change and addressing critical needs which impact the community," and Meijer through the Browns' First and Ten program to take a group of 30 local students on a shopping spree.
The students were all a part of the Cleveland Muny League's Ohio Elite Seminoles youth football program and were taken on a shopping spree to encourage good attendance at school, a hard work ethic, and good character on and off the field.
Delpit walked into the room of kids wearing their special t-shirts with Delpit's name and No. 22 on the back, all excited to meet a member of the Browns. Before the shopping started, Delpit spoke to the kids to encourage them to focus on school and work hard at everything they do.
"I just want to stress to y'all how important it is to be present," Delpit told the kids. "I learned that availability is the best ability so I want y'all to pay attention and focus in school, class, whether you play sports, whatever."
Kids then got some one on one time with Delpit, meeting him and taking a picture.
Some where a bit shy while some showed their excitement, like Neveah, who plays safety for her football team and also boasts a 17-1 record wrestling.
"It was good [to meet Grant]," Neveah said. "I want to play for the Cleveland Browns."
Other kids, like a charismatic boy named Rylan, made the most of their moment. While meeting with Delpit, Ryan challenged him, telling him that he could "Moss him," the affectionate term for a grandiose catch made over a defender in the style of Hall of Famer Randy Moss.
Delpit took Rylan up on his challenge in the aisles of Meijer, with Browns cornerback A.J. Green stepping in at quarterback for the head to head matchup, and it made for a lasting memory for both the NFL players and the young football hopeful, who seems to have all the makings of a future star.
#Browns safety Grant Delpit took local students on a shopping spree at Meijer this evening for school supplies, toys, clothes and anything else they might want or need.— Camryn Justice (@camijustice) September 29, 2021
During the event, one of the kids told Delpit that he could Moss him. So they went head to head.
After meeting with Delpit, the kids then got to shop the isles of Meijer with their parents and guardians, picking out sporting gear, school supplies, clothes, toys and any other items they wanted or needed for themselves, family and friends. Each child received a gift card for $150 dollars and two special gift bags provided by Delpit and Meijer.
Delpit walked the aisles during the shopping spree, checking in on what each kid was picking out and encouraging the kids and their parents to pick whatever they wanted.
He said that being able to give back like this after making a splash in his NFL debut recently is something he truly values.
"It's great to come out here and give to the community, give to the community, see kids smile, that's what it's all about," Delpit said. "Just from the support, just from welcoming me with open arms— a kid from Louisiana, I'm not from the north, this is new to me—so everybody's been so nice and kind and there's a lot of great people here.
Tuesday's event was Delpit's first in his new home of Northeast Ohio, but he said it certainly won't be his last.
"This is not the end of the road, whatever we come up with is going to be great," Delpit said.
Camryn Justice is a digital content producer at News 5 Cleveland. Follow her on Twitter @camijustice.
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