Two former Bears, running back Matt Forte and defensive end Alex Brown, stood at the 50-yard line inside the Walter Payton Center at Halas Hall on Friday afternoon with 200 high school football players staring back.
“Do more than what’s required of you,” Forte told the athletes.
One week ahead of the high school football season, players from Lane Tech, Harper, Hubbard and Hyde Park came to the Bears’ facilities in Lake Forest for Nike’s Sport Changes Everything event.
Forte and Brown led players through drills and passed along valuable lessons beyond the game in hopes of setting the tone for these student-athletes, on and off the field.
“I wish we had this when I was growing up,” Brown said. “When you have guys like a Matt Forte that comes in, and you can see them first-hand, you know that he’s from Slidell, Louisiana, a small place. If you’re in a small place, or any place for that matter, if he can do it, then I can do it, too. It gives you that confidence that you can do it.”