MIAMI (WSVN) - Hours away from finding out who will receive the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award, all 32 nominees paid a special visit to the Hank Klein Boys & Girls Club in Miami.
7News cameras captured the pros throwing footballs and supervising children on the field, Friday afternoon.
“While they are great football players, what they do off the field is even more amazing,” said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. “These guys are special because they have been voted this year by teammates and others to represent the great players in our league.”
One of the nominees on hand was Jacksonville Jaguars defensive end Calais Campbell.
“When you experience and decide that you want to go and show people to come after you that it’s possible, you want to give them hope,” he said.
Nominees teamed up with students to show them the importance of giving back.
7News cameras captured Cincinnati Bengals running back Giovani Bernard joining students as they painted a wall at the venue.
“Just being able to give back to the community is always good for these kids, for sure,” he said.
The children said they appreciate the show of support from the players.
“You’re a good man if you donate and do everything for your local town,” said attendee Djavan Pandierro.
The NFL Man of the Year recognizes one NFL player for his outstanding community service activity.
It’s an honor that Miami Dolphins defensive lineman Davon Godchaux hopes to add to his list of accomplishments.
“It would be special, man. It would be very special,” he said. “If I could win this award now, it would be special, man. I guess I’d say, ‘All drinks on me.'”
Godchaux hopes to join three past Dolphins players who took home the award. All three recipients — Dwight Stephenson, Dan Marino and, most recently, Jason Taylor — went on to become Hall of Famers.
“It means a lot, man. It’s the best award in football, in my opinion,” said Godchaux as he painted a wall. “Obviously, it’s Roger Goodell’s opinion, too, so I mean, I think, to have a chance to win this award, with all those 31 other nominees, it’s gonna be very special.”
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