Sunday, December 22, 2013
Nelson dedicates game to foster child
By Matt Ehalt
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- As New York Jets receiver David Nelson toured New York City with Davion Only on Saturday, the 15-year-old foster boy had a simple request for Nelson.
"I asked him if there was anything to let him know he was in my heart," Nelson said. "I was playing for him today and he told me to point to the sky after my first catch."
David Nelson had two touchdown catches against the Browns.
With 1:18 left in the first half, Nelson finally tallied his first catch, finding an open spot in the back of the end zone to haul in a six-yard touchdown catch in the Jets' 24-13 victory against the Cleveland Browns on Sunday.
Just as he promised, Nelson walked out of the back of the end zone and pointed up to the sky. A touching weekend became even more memorable for Nelson and Only.
In addition to hosting Only and a fellow orphan this weekend as part of his i'mME charity, Nelson scored two touchdowns to help the Jets to their win at MetLife Stadium. Only made headlines in October when he asked members of a St. Petersburg, Fla. church to adopt him.
"Inspiration," Nelson said. "Just talking to them and hearing their life story, what they've been through and all the obstacles and circumstances they've overcome to kind of be where they are now. This is a (15)-year-old kid who just wants a family. His mom passed away back in June and just to hear his perspective on life and the things he hoped to do in his heart truly inspired me."
Nelson's i'mME organization attempts to help orphan children, and according to its website, it is looking to build an orphanage in Haiti. Saturday, he took the pair of orphans around New York City, showing them famous New York spots as they were tailed by the TODAY show. He told The Associated Press that the day on the town was supposed to be: "a crash course in Christmastime in the city."
Sunday, Nelson had the pair join him at the game, and he said he planned to celebrate with them after the Jets' win. Facing the team that released him in the preseason, Nelson caught a six-yard touchdown pass in the first half that sliced the deficit to 10-7, and he added a five-yard touchdown catch early in the fourth quarter that put the Jets ahead for good, 17-10. He finished with four catches for 33 yards.
The touchdowns marked his first scores of the year, and his first in a regular season game since Nov. 27, 2011, when he was with Buffalo.
Those touchdowns, though, paled in comparison to what spending the weekend with Only meant to the receiver.
"I was truly humbled yesterday to have the chance to spend the day with [Only] and learn from him and just to be in his presence," Nelson said. "Today, it was a little different feeling. I was playing for him and I was loose and free and I'm extremely grateful I was able to play the way I was for him."