GILBERT, Ariz. (KSAZ) - For the last 18 years, Greenfield Junior High Special Education teacher Darla Knight has put the time into making a two-hour training camp something that these kids look forward to every year.
"Special needs is my life, I live it 24 hours a day," she said. "I love it. It brings me so much joy to see how much fun they're having."
Of five schools in the Gilbert Unified School District, nearly 200 special needs students hit the field to train like a champion.
"I asked the Arizona Cardinals 18 years ago to help me out and they were more than obliged to do it," Knight said. "Every year, they set aside money and come and help me out."
Ten stations were set up for campers, most of which modeled how the Cardinals train at professional camp, but the best part of field day may not have been the drills or the passes, but seeing a familiar face.
"Just seeing them with a smile on their face, you know, I have two little ones myself, so like I said, a child with special needs, I just know they love the attention and they love to have fun just like anybody else," said Antoine Bethea, Arizona Cardinals safety. "So for me to come out here just to put a smile on their face, it means the world to me."
And getting a new experience, is a play-by-play that never gets old.
"Pretty much seeing everyone here, you know, having fun and seeing Big Red and also seeing the football players," Christian Parra.