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Walter Payton Man of the Year Nominees Announced

Today the NFL announced the 32 players honored as their team's Man of the Year.

Today the NFL announced the 32 players honored as their team’s Man of the Year. According to NFL.com “Representing the best of the NFL’s commitment to philanthropy and community impact, these players are now eligible to win the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award presented by Nationwide. The Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award recognizes a player for his excellence on and off the field.”

From this list, three nominees will be selected as finalists for the award, named for the Hall of Fame Chicago Bears running back, Walter Payton, who died in 1999. Finalists will be revealed in January 2016 and the winner will be announced during the fifth Annual NFL Honors awards show on Feb. 6, the night before Super Bowl 50.

Each of the 32 team nominees receives a $5,000 donation to their charity of choice. The two runner-ups will receive an additional $6,000 donation, and the winner will receive an additional $50,000 donation. Donations will be courtesy of the NFL Foundation and Nationwide.

Per the NFL: 


“Serving their communities and philanthropic causes is a strong and long-standing tradition of NFL players,” said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. “These outstanding young men embrace and represent that important commitment of giving back to our communities. We salute and thank our players for their leadership.”


To further celebrate and promote the 32 nominees, Nationwide, the presenting sponsor of the award, will execute an inaugural Charity Challenge. Team nominees will each have a unique hashtag and fans will be encouraged to tweet using player hashtags. The player hashtag that generates the most mentions will win a $20,000 donation to his charity of choice from Nationwide.

“As a company who understands the importance of community service and giving, Nationwide is proud to be the sponsor of the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award,” said Nationwide’s Chief Marketing OfficerTerrance Williams. “While only one of these men can win the award, the fact that they have been nominated makes them, and the communities they serve, winners. We congratulate this year’s nominees and thank them for their leadership.”

Here is the list of team nominees:


Arizona Cardinals — Patrick Peterson

Atlanta Falcons — Patrick DiMarco


Baltimore Ravens — Steve Smith Sr.

Buffalo Bills — Eric Wood

Carolina Panthers — Greg Olsen

Chicago Bears — Matt Forte

Cincinnati Bengals — Carlos Dunlap



Cleveland Browns — Gary Barnidge


Dallas Cowboys — Brandon Carr

Denver Broncos — David Bruton Jr.

Detroit Lions — Stephen Tulloch

Green Bay Packers — Sam Barrington


Houston Texans — J.J. Watt

Indianapolis Colts — Dwayne Allen

Jacksonville Jaguars — Zane Beadles

Kansas City Chiefs — Eric Berry


Miami Dolphins — Ryan Tannehill


Minnesota Vikings — Chad Greenway

New England Patriots — Devin McCourty

New Orleans Saints — Benjamin Watson

New York Giants — Eli Manning

New York Jets — Eric Decker



Oakland Raiders — Justin Tuck

Philadelphia Eagles — Connor Barwin


Pittsburgh Steelers — Cameron Heyward

San Diego Chargers — Darrell Stuckey

San Francisco 49ers — Anquan Boldin



Seattle Seahawks — Richard Sherman

St. Louis Rams — Chris Long

Tampa Bay Buccaneers — Vincent Jackson

Tennessee Titans — Delanie Walker

Washington Redskins — Ryan Kerrigan