Jameis Winston held a football camp today, like so many players do. Here’s a twist: this one cost participants $149, and it had a number of corporate sponsors. This was not a free camp or clinic, like Gerald McCoy’s efforts this weekend. It was an elaborate effort in money-making. Good for Winston, of course, but maybe we shouldn’t get carried away in promoting it.
Sure, it looks like fun. It also looks like he was having fun.
Bucs' Jameis Winston making sure his kids are loud with the call before snap at his youth football camp today. pic.twitter.com/f3IpLylmyg— Greg Auman (@gregauman) June 20, 2016
Winston will be holding a free football camp in Birmingham, Alabama on July 1st, and has shown up at his teammates’ free events as well, so I’m not suggesting that he’s not participating in the community or engaging in charitable efforts. In fact, he’s been particularly active and visible in both, as he has throughout his football career dating back to college. It’s just a little grating that this particular event is getting a lot of publicity.
In addition to the money and fun, he also gets some exercise out of this camp.
"The more camps I'm at, it helps me stay in football shape," Winston told the Tampa Bay Times. "Believe it or not, being out here all day long, having fun with these kids can keep you in shape. It's better than staying at home and not doing anything."
This is all good for Winston’s business, good for his image, and he’s getting a ton of free press out of it while also making himself some nice pocket change. Not that he needs that pocket change, given his multi-million dollar contract. But if we, as media, are going to talk about Winston’s events — maybe we should focus on his charity efforts instead of his business ventures?