Miami Dolphins want fans to help Hurricane Harvey relief (including vs. Bucs)

Defensive back Michael Thomas, shown during a community event with kids in Fort Pierce, hopes Dolphins fans can give a helping hand to his hometown Houston. (Allen Eyestone / The Palm Beach Post)

The Dolphins are joining the list of NFL teams pitching in to help victims of Hurricane Harvey.

The Dolphins announced a donation drive Wednesday to collect items to be sent to shelters in the Houston area.

Until Sept. 15, fans can drop off items by entering Gate 4 at Hard Rock Stadium. Donations also will be accepted at the Sept. 10 regular-season opener against the visiting Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Fans also can drop off supplies at the Dolphins’ training facility at Nova Southeastern University in Davie.

Items needed include baby supplies (diapers, nonperishable food, etc.), clothing, batteries, blankets, toiletries, hand sanitizer and bottled water. A full list of eligible supplies is posted on the team’s website.

Among the advocates for the drive is Dolphins defensive back Michael Thomas, who is from Houston and has family and property there. One of his sisters fields 911 calls for the city. Thomas tweeted that relief supplies also can be sent to 1865 Aldine Bender Rd., Houston, Texas, 77032.

The Titans, Texans, Patriots, Jets and NFL Foundation are each donating $1 million to relief efforts.

Thursday’s preseason finale between the Texans and Cowboys was moved from Houston to the Dallas area, and would have benefited victims, but authorities decided Wednesday that the best course of action was to cancel the game.

“At this time, the priority of our organization is getting our players, coaches and staff back home to be reunited with their families, many of whom have been evacuated from their homes and are currently sheltered,” the Texans said in a statement. “The team feels it is imperative to get back home to help the Houston community recover from the devastation of Hurricane Harvey.”

The Texans’ J.J. Watt launched a relentless campaign to raise money. Watt began with a goal of $200,000 that has proven to be woefully low. He has incrementally raised it to $1 million, then $2 million and beyond.

Wednesday afternoon, Watt hit Twitter followers with a real challenge: $10 million.

Players including Jacksonville’s Leonard Fournette and Dallas’ Dez Bryant have donated $50,000 to affiliated charities. Fournette, who played at LSU and is from New Orleans, wrote on Twitter, “Donating 50,000 to the people in Houston, y’all are in my prayers, we went through Katrina we know the feeling God bless.”

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Check out The Palm Beach Post‘s Miami Dolphins page on Facebook

The Daily Dolphin Live: Join the Conversation

Join our reporters for a special evening as they talk NFL with Dolphins Pro Bowl Guard Jermon Bushrod, two-time Super Bowl champion Bob Kuechenberg and former Dolphins Pro Bowl linebacker Kim Bokamper on Tuesday, Sept. 5 at 6:30 p.m. at Bokamper’s Fort Lauderdale. The event is free to the first 100 people and will include raffles, light bites and drinks.

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