Patriots executive honored by Pop Warner organization


ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) – New England Patriots vice chairman and president Jonathan Kraft won the Warner Award at Pop Warner’s 46th annual All-American Scholar banquet on Saturday.

Kraft was joined by his father, owner Robert Kraft, who accepted the team of the year award on behalf of the Patriots.

Jonathan Kraft has been instrumental in building New England into one of the NFL’s most successful franchises, with Super Bowl victories in 2001, 2003 and 2004. For the past two seasons, Jonathan Kraft also has coached his son’s Pop Warner team.

“As someone who spends time coaching Pop Warner kids, I see the confidence that is instilled in Pop Warner participants not just for what they do on the field but in their commitment to perform in the classroom,” Jonathan Kraft said.

Other award winners included the first Arena Football League team of the year, which went to Orlando.

Browns center LeCharles Bentley, an All-Pro player for the New Orleans Saints in 2003 and 2005, was awarded the Inspiration to Youth Award for his community work. Former Packers receiver Antonio Freeman was awarded the Pop Warner Humanitarian Award.

Pop Warner, the leading youth football and cheer/dance organization with more than 400,000 participants, is named after Glenn S. “Pop” Warner.

AP-ES-05-27-06 1709EDT