Football Team

Washington sends message of support to HS player with autism

Football Team

The Washington Football Team's outreach goes far beyond the DMV. 

Back in Austin, Texas, the hometown of placekicker Dustin Hopkins, there's a special story of Lockhart High School's Desmond Pulliam. 

Pulliam, who has autism spectrum disorder, scooped up a fumble during a game with rivals Bastrop last week and took it all the way to the endzone for the score, surrounded by his teammates. It's an incredible story.

For Hopkins, though, Pulliam's story hit extra close to home. 

Hopkins and his wife are parents to a son who also copes with autism spectrum disorder. When Hopkins saw the incredible play that garnered widespread attention across the country, it gave him hope that his own child will someday be able to overcome his disability in similar fashion. 

"I want to tell you how much of an inspiration you are to so many people, but especially me as an individual and my son, who also is in the autism spectrum," Hopkins told Austin news station KVUE. "I hope that one day he can grow up and do stuff and be involved in sports just like you." 

Hopkins' coach Ron Rivera and teammates also made sure to show their support. When a Lockhart coach gathered the team together after a practice, he turned their attention to the scoreboard where Rivera and a couple of Washington's defensive stars shared their messages of support for Pulliam. 

 

Those stars were No. 2 overall pick Chase Young and three-time Pro Bowler Ryan Kerrigan, who have plenty of experience of scooping up fumbles themselves. All three told the team via the scoreboard video of how impressed they were with Pulliam's feat after watching his big play. 

For a team in a two-loss rut to make time to show their support for someone a time zone away was terrific. Hopkins and his Washington Football Team colleagues surely made "Desmond's Dream" that much better.