Montreal-born NFL star Laurent-Duvernay Tardif preaches fitness to kids

Montreal-born NFL star Laurent Duvernay-Tardif at McGIll University's Tomlinson Fieldhouse. June 20, 2017. Dan Spector / Global News

It’s not often a Montrealer hits it big in the world of NFL football, but Laurent Duvernay-Tardif has become a key member of the Kansas City Chiefs.

During his off-season downtime he could easily be living a lavish, globe-trotting lifestyle. But on Tuesday, he chose to be playing sports with about 200 Montreal school kids at McGill University’s Tomlinson Fieldhouse.

“People are telling me those kids are loving it. I’m loving it more than they’re loving it. Seeing the light in their eyes and having so much fun playing those games,” Duvernay-Tardif told Global News.

READ MORE: 5 things you didn’t know about: Laurent Duvernay-Tardif

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The event at McGill was the first for his Laurent Duvernay-Tardif Foundation, where the mission is to promote physical activity among children. He unveiled a re-purposed school bus that will tour the province putting on sports days at different schools.

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“In the bus we have everything to organize activities inside the school; whether it’s hockey nets, soccer balls, volleyballs,” said Duvernay-Tardif. The tours will be manned by volunteers at his foundation, but he will join them too in the NFL off-season.

NDG-raised NHL defenseman Marco Scandella was at the McGill event playing hockey with kids.

“When you do nice things and you see the kids and the smiles on their faces it makes you happy,” he said, saluting Duvernay-Tardif for the initiative.

READ MORE: Laurent Duvernay-Tardif: ‘The Most Interesting Man in the NFL,’ a biography

Even though the football star signed a 5-year extension worth of $40 million with the Kansas City Chiefs, he is still finishing med school at McGill.

“The contract is awesome it’s a great vote of confidence from the chiefs but the most important thing for me from the get-go is to show everybody that the student-athlete model works at the highest level,” said Duvernay-Tardif.

He has three months of studies left before his final exam.

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