A shout out to Jerome Simpson, who isn’t always at the top of the list when it comes to Vikings players making a positive impact in the community. Simpson apparently had a very positive impact on some kids struggling with addiction problems when he recently hung out at P.E.A.S.E. Academy, a special high school in Minneapolis.
Never mind that Simpson was there to fulfil part of the community service requirement stemming from his DWI bust last November. Prosecutors say Simpson actually went beyond the 120 hours of court ordered community service, clocking extra time, and interacting with students at the academy on a level beyond what was expected of him.
Simpson reportedly gave a talk to the students where he expressed genuine regret over his past run-ins with the law (besides the DWI bust, Simpson was also busted for marijuana possession a couple years back). He sat with students, participated in activities, served lunch and even went tubing with the kids.
It’s not jumping into Lake Minnetonka to save some boaters, but it’s still pretty big stuff.
Is this a sign that Jerome Simpson has turned a corner and is ready to take life, and football, more seriously than he has in the past? Or is it just a case of a guy wanting to make a good impression on a judge with two years of probation still ahead of him? I don’t know. I just know that this isn’t the kind of “giving back to the community” you’ll see publicized by the Vikings on their website or Twitter feed, and I wanted to make sure people were aware of Simpson’s efforts.
We’ve given Simpson a lot of grief over the years – and I believe his actions have often warranted it – and it’s only fair that we give him kudos when he does something good. He deserves the shout out for his efforts with the P.E.A.S.E. Academy kids.