On Thursday, the NFL announced the 32 team nominees for the 2017 Walter Payton Man of the Year Award and the Pittsburgh Steelers selection this year is defensive end Cameron Heyward.
The annual award recognizes a player’s off-the-field community service, as well as his playing excellence and Heyward is a perfect representative for the Steelers when it comes to those attributes.
Heyward established the Heyward House Foundation in 2015 to benefit many causes, including Southeastern Brain Tumor Foundation, Boys & Girls Club of Western Pa., DKMS, KidsVoice, Smyrna Stars Basketball Club and after school fitness programs and you can learn more about his foundation at his website.
“I have always prided myself in giving back to the community,” said Heyward, according to steelers.com. “The Walter Payton Award is the biggest award when giving back to the community. Walter Payton was a heck of a man, on and off the field.”
As a result of him being a nominee this year, Heyward will now wear a special decal on his helmet for the rest of the season designating him as such. This year’s league winner will be announced on Feb. 3.
“NFL players are outstanding, generous men of character who give back to their communities,” NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said. “Walter Payton represented the very best on and off the field and this year’s Man of the Year nominees exemplify his legacy of philanthropy and leadership. We are proud to support players as they use their platforms to drive positive change.”
If you have not already done so, please take time to cast a Pro Bowl vote for Heyward as he is truly deserving of it. The Steelers former first round draft pick currently leads the team in sacks with 9 entering Week 14.
Cameron Heyward was presented a check as a donation to The Heyward House Foundation for being named our nominee for the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year. #WPMOY pic.twitter.com/vuOk8ZCKEl
— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) December 8, 2017