What was started with Colin Kaepernick on August 26th, 2016 reached a fevered pitch this September.
Since last Sunday’s display by the players, social media and news outlets alike have been flooded with reports about NFL athletes, team officials and the national anthem protests to the point of overload.
However, at least one professional football player is breaking ranks with his colleagues, opting to use his platform for something far more productive.
Deshaun Watson is a rookie quarterback for the Houston Texans experiencing all the NFL has to offer when it comes to money for the first time this year. Many young men in their 20s in his shoes would go somewhat crazy spending their newfound fortune. They might go out and buy a new car, a closet full of expensive, trendy shoes or just splurge on any number of things.
Instead, Deshaun decided to make a real impact in someone else’s life for the good through a financial gift.
Three women who are employed by the Texans’ franchise were negatively affected by Hurricane Harvey, causing them financial hardship. These are the individuals Deshaun felt deserved to be helped, so once he got his first paycheck as a starting quarterback from the Texans, he put his plan into action. These women worked tirelessly in the NRG Stadium’s cafeteria.
A visit from the franchise’s starting quarterback was certainly unexpected for these women but that’s exactly what happened, and that wasn’t all.
Watson walked into the Texan’s cafeteria holding three ribbon-wrapped envelopes, which contained three individual checks. He then walked up to the three women and thanked them for all they have done for the organization through their service.
“For what y’all do for us every day and never complain, I really appreciate y’all,” he said. “So, I wanted to give you my first game check to help y’all out some type of way. Hopefully, this helps to get you back on your feet. And anything else y’all need, I’m always here to help.”
Watson’s published salary as a rookie quarterback is $465,000 annually. Each game check is $27,353. This means Deshaun gave each woman around $9,000. This was likely a substantial help for these women struggling to rebuild their lives after the devastating flooding caused by Hurricane Harvey.
It’s events like this that truly cause many Americans to question why so much attention is being given to players who choose to disrespect the flag instead of using their status to accomplish real change. However, a look at Deshaun’s background reveals stunning reasons why he would choose to be so charitable.
Growing up, Deshaun, his three siblings and his mother Deann lived in a small apartment. The family heard about the local Habitat for Humanity chapter and thought this might be a way for them to better their lives. Deanna volunteered for more than 300 hours, helping build homes for others before she was finally able to become the recipient herself through Habitat for Humanity. Incidentally, Habitat for Humanity itself is another example of an NFL player giving back as it was originally founded by Warrick Dunn, a former NFL running back. This cycle of giving has now moved on to help three more families through Deshaun.
The Walter Payton Award recognizes player excellence on and off the field. The award is named after the late Walter Payton, Hall of Fame Chicago Bears running back, who had a significant impact on his own community. Each NFL team nominates a player from their team who has used their influence and income to help others. In 2016, New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning and Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald won the award.
There is little doubt that eventually Deshaun Watson will be considered for the Walter Payton Award. Until then, though, he will likely keep teaching those around him and in the media what it means to give back and share a blessing. Way to go, Deshaun!
~ Conservative Zone