Jaelan Phillips named NFLPA Community MVP for recent work with incarcerated youth

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One of the best aspects of being a young sports star seems to be having the money and platform to really make a difference in different charitable causes.

When it comes to Miami Dolphins defender Jaelan Phillips, that has to do with helping incarcerated youth achieve a better future for themselves.

Phillips recently took Dolphins rookies with him to the Broward Regional Juvenile Detention Center to speak with 40 youth about overcoming personal challenges and was named the NFLPA’s Community MVP for Week 8 for his work.

Phillips himself responded to the honor on social media.

It’s pretty amazing to see that the 23-year-old Phillips has already made it a priority in his life to give back to people in the South Florida community. What’s even more impressive is his incredible humility when it comes to talking about how he chooses to spend his time and what he gets out of it.

“I’ll just come down and just talk to the kids,” Phillips told NBC LX. “These kids are just like us and they really only just need a little bit of motivation and help. So that’s what we try to do.

“… It’s just joyful, especially with kids. You know, that next generation, they’re so impactful and they’re so impressionable, being so young. And so to be able to get in there, they’re really just they have pure energy, pure joy and excitement. So to make their day just is honestly one of the best feelings ever.”

He added that he sees his charity work as a responsibility given his status as a young NFL star.

“I think that’s one of the most important things that we can do as NFL players,” he said of his community work. “We have this amazing platform where these kids and even adults look up to us and idolize us. So for us to be able to set the example and really give back and show everybody else how important it is to give back, I think that’s really more important than anything else that we do as athletes.”

It’s pretty powerful to see how much Phillips’ charity work means to him, and it should make Dolphins fans even prouder of the young man.

As for his work on the field, he’s quietly putting together a solid sophomore season in the league. In seven games, Phillips has logged six starts and recorded three sacks, 21 combined tackles, four tackles for loss and two fumble recoveries. He’s a big part of the Dolphins’ pass rush every single week.

He arguably had his best game of the season in Week 7 versus the Pittsburgh Steelers, finishing the 16-10 victory with 1.5 sacks, eight combined tackles and two tackles for loss.

He’ll look to keep up that kind of production in Week 8 versus the Detroit Lions.

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Jonathan is a freelance writer, filmmaker, and passionate fan of the NFL. In the past Jonathan has covered politics, entertainment, travel, and more. He is a proud contributor of Dolphin Nation.