Former NFL kicker Jay Feely delivers meals to first responders in Arizona
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Former NFL kicker Jay Feely delivers meals to first responders in Arizona

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Chicago Bears kicker Jay Feely (4) scores a field goal after the interception by Chicago Bears cornerback Kyle Fuller (23) against the Minnesota Vikings during the second half of their game on Sunday, Dec. 28, 2014 at TCF Bank Field, in Minneapolis, Minn.

Chicago Bears kicker Jay Feely (4) scores a field goal after the interception by Chicago Bears cornerback Kyle Fuller (23) against the Minnesota Vikings during the second half of their game on Sunday, Dec. 28, 2014 at TCF Bank Field, in Minneapolis, Minn. (Nuccio DiNuzzo/Chicago Tribune/TNS)

Tampa Bay area native and former NFL kicker Jay Feely found a way to help on not one, but two fronts in the battle against the coronavirus.

Along with his son, Jace, Feely - who was born in Odessa and starred at Jesuit High School - is purchasing meals from Phoenix-area restaurants and delivering them to healthcare workers and first responders, according to the Arizona Republic.

"We were watching (the numbers) sitting at home," Feely, who spent four of his 14 seasons in the NFL with the Arizona Cardinals, told the Republic. "My whole career, through the greatest blessing of playing in the NFL, I was given a platform where I can do some good.

" ... I thought, 'What can I do to help?' I saw a story in Washington. It was two-fold. You can help the restaurant and small business that is hurting right now. You purchase meals from them and at the same time you bring them to first responders and thank them for risking their lives."

Feely started a gofundme page, called, "Food Fighters," hoping to raise money for Arizona restaurants, as well as medical personnel and first responders.

Feely, who also played briefly with the Tampa Bay Storm of the since-dissolved Arena Football League, contributed $1,000, as did former Cardinals Hall-of-Fame quarterback Kurt Warner, according to the Republic.

By mid-afternoon Sunday, the crowdfunding campaign had reached its $10,000 goal.

So Feely increased it to $20,000.

"It gives me another view of what other people are doing," Feely's son told the Republic. "I'm just doing online school. These people are struggling to keep their restaurants open, and other people are battling for others to keep them alive."

Visit the Tampa Bay Times (St. Petersburg, Fla.) at www.tampabay.com

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