Falcons defensive tackle Grady Jarrett has been nominated for the NFL’s Walter Payton Man of the Year award for his outstanding community service as well as excellence on the field.
“Being nominated for man of the year is an accomplishment,” Jarrett said. “Giving back and making an impact on people's lives in a real way is very important to me."
The award was established in 1970. It was renamed in 1999 after the late Hall of Fame Bears running back. Each team nominates one player who has had significant positive impact on his community.
The winner is awarded at the Super Bowl.
Jarrett visits the Atlanta Mission: Shepherd’s Inn, a homeless shelter for men. His mother, Elisha, has helped him serve dinner there.
Throughout 2018, Jarrett has taken initiative in leading the Falcons social justice efforts, and since joining the Falcons in 2015 has made it a priority to give back to the Georgia community, according to the team.
Recently he has partnered with the Atlanta Police Department Foundation's, At Promise Center, and the Police/Teen Mentoring Program at the Thomasville Heights Boys & Girls Club to speak to youth about the importance of anti-bullying and to encourage those who are either victims of bullying or have witnessed it, to speak up.