A teacher at East Aurora Middle School received the call around 12:30 pm Tuesday. Buffalo Bills safety Jordan Poyer was touched and impressed by a letter he received from 12-year-old sixth-grader Logan Neri, who wanted to stop and surprise him … for an hour.
And at the right time, there is Poyer, who understood how Neri sometimes struggles to connect with his friends, pulling out to start a tour that will forget him like that. for Neri and everyone at school. .
Last month, through Austin Air, the school won a partnership with Bills players. An injury suffered in the first game prevented Poyer from going.
“I did something to see Jordan Poyer,” Neri told head coach Matt Brown.
On Monday, Neri, with the help of her English teacher, Courtney Vitello, wrote a letter to Poyer.
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“He sat down with me with all these ideas of what he wanted to say,” Vitello said. “He wants Poyer to know he’s as important as Josh Allen.”
Neri said he “just wanted to let him know that he’s my favorite player because of the way he plays. Poyer and most of the defense, they don’t get a lot of credit.
The parts of the letter are:
“I want to thank you for thinking of coming to East Aurora Middle School when we met a few weeks ago. … I want you to know that I believe that the struggles you face are difficult. to go, but you have changed me and you have changed my actions in these past months to continue to do the best and be patient. …
“You made a difference because the way you play makes me want to play football as a safety or D-lineman. You show me how to be a good teammate and use proper exercise. I know you may not always, but in my opinion, having good exercise will put you in the spotlight.
“The purpose of the letter is to show you how good you are and how you have affected my behavior and sports performance in the sixth grade so far.”
Because the AFC East has improved so much this season, the Bills have a long way to go in their final five games.
Poyer was surprised by the accuracy of the letter.
“Just thinking that a kid here calls me a hero and some of the things he’s been through, I thought it was a great opportunity to try and inspire him as much as I can, to show him in a good light,” he told the Buffalo. News. “His letter was very detailed and well-organized, and I had to read it twice because it didn’t sound like something from the sixth grade.”
Vitello said Neri didn’t want the letter to be “too long. We just took his ideas and he’s a great writer, he got the word and all his ideas. I just helped the planning and seeing where he wanted to go with her.
The school sent a letter to Avalon Sports, which is handling Poyer’s off-field sales.
A player from each of the NFL’s 32 teams is selected for his or her philanthropic and community service.
Poyer recorded a motivational video for Neri, but the amazing things are just beginning. He made the 20-minute drive from the Bills home to East Aurora and was greeted by Brown and assistant coach Matt Librock. The first plan was to lead Neri to Brown’s office, where Poyer would show him the 21st game-tying score.
“Let’s go down and get him,” he said to Brown and Librock.
They walked out of the boys’ locker room, where Neri was behind the bathroom counter. As Neri came through the door, she called out, “Jordan Poyer?! Oh my god! Come on!” and flew into Poyer’s arms.
“That’s good,” Poyer said later. “You can’t explain how many of those feelings he has when he sees you for the first time and jumps into your arms.”
The Buffalo Bills are in control of their playoff streak. Win, and the road goes to the Super Bowl at Orchard Park.
After returning to Brown’s office, Poyer handed Neri the shirt and asked Neri to sign a copy of his letter (“I’ll take this picture,” Poyer said). They sit at a conference table and spend time talking about sports, football, family and life.
Poyer invited Neri and his family – his parents, his brother (age 13) and his sisters (ages 9 and 6) to the Bills’ Jan. 8 home finale against the New England Patriots. (“I’ve never been to a real stadium,” Neri said.)
The conversation flowed smoothly, the 12-year-old as comfortable as if meeting Poyer for the first time.
“Life is full of risk,” Poyer told Neri. “You have to learn how to do it and keep moving. What’s important is what’s in your heart. Don’t worry about what anyone says about you. You have a great group of people and environment that supports you.
Vitello was one of the people guarding the door to Brown’s office.
Stevenson, a 2021 sixth-round pick, appeared in five games last season, with 14 punt returns and seven kick returns. He didn’t have a hit in six hits on offense.
“I started crying. I had to leave for a while,” he said, taking a break from managing a training facility. “I’m very happy for Logan. He is a good boy. To see someone like Poyer make that connection and watch it unfold, it’s unbelievable. I’ve never seen Logan smile so much. He is usually a kid who can make jokes and make people laugh. To see her eyes light up made my day.
The meeting ended. Again, Poyer had another idea.
Poyer walked Neri, who said he would wear the suit while watching the Bills’ games starting Sunday against the New York Jets, back up to the band table (he played to the gun). Jaws dropped from the students as Poyer introduced himself and explained why Neri was late.
There is a reason for that.
“I want them to know that,” Poyer said. “I want his friends to see him with me. He is going through a lot, so I can connect him in a good way that I can hope to help him and start to lead him in the right direction. I hope so.
The latest memory in his mind, Vitello was sure.
“Logan gives a lot of confidence, that’s for sure,” he said. “He just needed that little shot. I can see him taking everything Poyer has to say to him and continuing to put his best foot forward. “