Jamaal Anderson meets kids from Ala. School for the Deaf

Falcons offensive lineman (72) Sam Baker blocks defensive end (98) Jamaal Anderson at the line while running a play. Curtis Compton ccompton@ajc.com

Falcons offensive lineman (72) Sam Baker blocks defensive end (98) Jamaal Anderson at the line while running a play. Curtis Compton ccompton@ajc.com

FLOWERY BRANCH – Defensive end Jamaal Anderson had a wide grin on his face after practice on Saturday.

He’d just finished talking to about 30 football players from the Alabama School for the Deaf, who had made the ride over from Talladega.

Anderson’s father, Glenn, is deaf.

“I was signing to the kids individually, but when I spoke to the whole group I had an interpreter to relay my message,” Anderson said. “I was just telling them that I appreciate them coming out here. I know they didn’t have to come here.”

Anderson grew up signing and has talked about how his father didn’t use his impairment as an excuse and how he earned a doctorate degree.

“I told them that I was proud to represent the deaf community out here because I feel like nobody in the NFL is doing it,” Anderson said. “It’s a strong feeling in my heart to have something to represent. I told them to stay focused and have a great season, stay injury free and keep you hopes alive because anything can come true.”

Anderson said some of the players wanted a piece of him.

“Some of the offensive linemen wanted to try to rough me up,” Anderson said. “I told that I was sore from (the scrimmage).”

He said they knew their football.

“They wanted to see Matt Ryan, John Parker Wilson and Roddy White,” Anderson said. “They know their football. They just wanted to be regular and see guys out here playing football.”

14 comments Add your comment

real falcon fan

August 8th, 2010
11:37 pm

have agreat year J.A. you are a great player and an even better man ! Real falcon fans appreciate your class and character . Thank you mr. A, keep up the good work .

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Reid Adair

August 9th, 2010
12:42 am

Thanks again, D Led, for taking the time to share off-the-field things like this. I am always happy to read about members of the Falcons making a difference in the community.

Birdseed – August 9 | Atlanta Falcons

August 9th, 2010
8:16 am

[...] The AJC’s D. Orlando Ledbetter wrote a bit more on Jamaal Anderson’s special guests during Saturday’s mock game. [...]

Joe Tess Fish House

August 9th, 2010
9:04 am

Awwww, thats nice but he still needs to step his game up. How about that guy from Buffalo…..Maybe the Falcons should get him to replace Anderson.


August 9th, 2010
10:05 am

Proud of Anderson for this. Nice.

Chattanooga Chuck

August 9th, 2010
12:43 pm

It’s easy to root for good guys, Maybe this is the year the light comes on for Jamaal.

grow up

August 9th, 2010
1:30 pm

This is an opportunity to celebrate the positives and not the negatives. We’ve becone so accustomed to drama, that if it’s not present, we get nervous and create it. Great job, JA. We need more of our athletes making a difference, behind the scenes. Heaven know when they mess up, that’s magnified beyond measure. We have to realize that there are more important things in life than winning Superbowls, though it would be nice and all, this impacts people destiny so to speak (just to know that someone cares)… D Led, keep up the good work as well. Remember to give back. We all could use some encouragement right now….


August 9th, 2010
5:02 pm

This going to be J.A. break out year. I believe that both the added strength and training he has devoted himself to are going to let him be the player the Falcons tought he could be. Go Falcons


August 9th, 2010
5:03 pm

sorry no spell checkkkkkk

Sage of Bluesland

August 10th, 2010
3:39 pm

Did the kids teach him how to sack the QB? Just sayin…


August 10th, 2010
6:53 pm

To be honest, I’ve pulled for JA all the way til last year BUT let me state that i was speaking of the football player and not the man. I read some things about him off the field I respect a lot. This is very commendable and great to hear about. Back to football though, maybe JA has been a DT the whole time?lol I hope he excels in that role b/c the kid has talent…just has to be used correctly.


August 12th, 2010
6:48 pm

I am happy for him but I wish he was 100 percent sign himself rather than depend on intrepreter and I wish he can be more spread the word about dead and hard of hearing. We live in a world of pain and suffer. Most of us as deaf doesn’t open up to what our problem or how much pain we are in. I wish Jamal nothing but much success in his futurer whether it is in Atlant or his hometown or whatever he choose to live in the near future. Good luck and I also don’t think you are more focus toward want something to do that related to deaf in the future but will have a successful future