A delegation of 11 NFL football players are heading to Israel next week for a visit set to commence on February 13.
The athletes will visit landmarks in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, the Dead Sea and Haifa, as well as Christian holy sites in the Galilee.
They will also visit the Rambam Medical Center, Yad Vashem, meet representatives from the Black Hebrew community in Dimona, and take part in a football game with the Israeli Football Association.
“Football stars are a source of inspiration for all American citizens. I am sure that, after the experiences that the players will enjoy in Israel and after they have seen the unique tourist sites and the special atmosphere here, they will become ambassadors of good will for Israel,” said Tourism Minister Yariv Levin.
Their tour is an initiative of the Ministry for Strategic Affairs and Public Diplomacy in cooperation with the Tourism Ministry and America’s Voices in Israel.
“The Tourism Ministry is hosting this delegation as part of its policy to promote sports tourism which has become an engine for economic growth around the world. The visit of this delegation, in such proximity to the American Super Bowl final, will enhance the exposure of the Israel tourism product to tens of millions of the players’ followers on social media,” said Levin.
An exhibition match in Jerusalem will take place on February 18 and is open to the public.
Among those taking part in the delegation are Cliff Avril and Michael Bennett, Martellus Bennett, Delanie Walker, Michael Kendricks, Cameron Jordan, Kenny Stills, Calais Campbell, Carlos Hyde, Dan Williams, and Justin Forsett. ESPN Football Commentator and former NFL Linebacker Kirk Morrison will also visit with the delegation.
“I see great importance in the arrival of this delegation of NFL stars to Israel. I have no doubt that their visit will be a powerful experience for them and I hope that, through their visit, they will get a balanced picture of Israel,” said Minister for Strategic Affairs and Public Diplomacy Gilad Erdan.