Known to many as “Sweetness”, former Chicago Bears running back Walter Payton did as much off of the playing field as he did on.  Payton died in 1999 but his legacy continues with the presentation of the Walter Payton Man of the Year award – an award given to a player who demonstrates “outstanding community service activities off the field, as well as excellence on it.”

On December 10, the NFL announced the list of nominees for the 2020 season Man of the Year Award.  There are 32 nominees – one for each NFL team.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell issued a statement on the nominees saying, “this year has presented significant challenges for us all, from the ongoing global pandemic to the continued social injustices witnessed this year.  The 32 Walter Payton Man of the Year nominees remind us that even in the face of adversity, players continue to raise awareness and use their voice and platform to positively impact their communities. The nominees will leave lasting legacies across the country in a time when we need leadership and strength the most.”

Each Man of the Year nominee receives a $40,000 donation in their name to the charity of their choice. The winner will receive a trophy, a patch to wear on their uniform, and a $250,000 donation to the charity of their choice.

The winner will be announced during NFL Honours in Super Bowl week.

The 2020 Walter Payton Man of the Year Award nominees are:
Corey Peters of the Arizona Cardinals
Steven Means of the Atlanta Falcons
Bradley Bozeman of the Baltimore Ravens
Harrison Phillips of the Buffalo Bills
Shaq Thompson of the Carolina Panthers
Jimmy Graham of the Chicago Bears
Geno Atkins of the Cincinnati Bengals
Myles Garrett of the Cleveland Browns
Jaylon Smith of the Dallas Cowboys
Justin Simmons of the Denver Broncos
Trey Flowers of the Detroit Lions
Corey Linsley of the Green Bay Packers
Michael Thomas of the Houston Texans
Jacoby Brissett of the Indianapolis Colts
Josh Lambo of the Jacksonville Jaguars
Travis Kelce of the Kansas City Chiefs
Alec Ingold of the Las Vegas Raiders
Isaac Rochell of the Los Angeles Chargers
Andrew Whitworth of the Los Angeles Rams
Byron Jones of the Miami Dolphins
Eric Kendricks of the Minnesota Vikings
Devin McCourty of the New England Patriots
Demario Davis of the New Orleans Saints
Dalvin Tomlinson of the New York Giants
Pierre Desir of the New York Jest
Rodney McLeod of the Philadelphia Eagles
Vane McDonald of the Pittsburgh Steelers
Arik Armstead of the San Francisco 49ers
Russell Wilson of the Seattle Seahawks
Mike Evans of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Kevin Byard of the Tennessee Titans
Jonathan Allen of the Washington Football Team