HAVELOCK - One of Havelock's most accomplished football sons has established a tradition of spending a weekend in the summer teaching his craft to the area's youth.

That man is veteran NFL linebacker Bruce Carter.

Carter is preparing to head into his eighth NFL season as he is a free agent and is waiting to see where his next destination will be.

As for the camp, Carter dances and smiles just as much as the kids out there.

"I always try and do the things that I know and that will help them as they grow with the game," Carter said.

"A big part of it is just getting them out here and getting them away from the iPads or phones for a couple hours which can be tough to do with some kids."

Perhaps some future Ram stars on Friday nights were out there Saturday developing their skills.

A big reason that the Rams have built such a strong program is that they teach much the same from Pop Warner to High School.

Carter had a group of assistant coaches helping him run the camp and two Havelock assistants in Donnie Richards and Brent Wooten were on hand to help as well.

Carter said he feels that one of the things he's most proud of in his NFL career is that he feels like one of those respected veterans we see across all sports.

"Yeah I was in Dallas for quite a while and you leave and then you see the same guys in different jerseys, you and them, so it's an honor to be a part of that NFL group," Carter said.

"Being a good player on and off the field is something I take a lot of pride in and that's a big message we want to get across to the kids."

Carter, who starred at the University of North Carolina prior to the NFL, stressed the importance of family and academics to the campers in their post-camp huddle in addition to the football talk.

"It's very important you know, without your education, you really can't participate in sports so we want them to know all it takes," Carter said.

While he awaits to see which jersey he will wear this season, Carter can count on seeing a lot of "CARTER 54" shirts around his hometown.

 

Jordan Honeycutt can be reached at 252-635-5670 or at jordan.honeycutt@newbernsj.com