Dwayne Allen wins Ed Block Courage award
Indianapolis Colts tight end Dwayne Allen has been selected by his teammates as the recipient of the 2014 Ed Block Courage Award.
The award is an annual recognition for courageous play by an individual and Allen is one of 32 National Football League players who earned the accolade. The players of each member club nominate an individual annually and those chosen are honored at a banquet in Baltimore each March.
“It’s very humbling to receive the Ed Block Courage Award,” said Allen. “It’s even more humbling knowing that it was voted on by my peers and knowing that they think of me in such a way to reward me. I never serve the community with the thought of receiving anything back and I always try to serve to the best of my ability. I’m truly grateful.”
Allen is in his third season with the Colts after being selected by the team in the third round (64th overall) of the 2012 NFL Draft. In nine starts this season, he has recorded 26 receptions for 374 yards and a career-high seven touchdowns. His touchdown total ranks tied for fourth among NFL tight ends this season.
“This guy is a selfless guy. He’s a great player but he’s a better person,” said coach Chuck Pagano. “I know he spends a great deal of time giving back and serving. We talk all the time here about team first and self second and serving. He does it on the football field and he does it in the locker room. He’s not a real loud guy around here. He lets his actions speak for themselves. He’s one of those guys that whatever time he has away from football, you know he’s doing something for the community and spending time out in the community and giving back.
"He’s one of those guys that has a great appreciation for the blessings that he has. He certainly understands that this is a privilege, and not a right, and he’s taken full advantage of the platform he has to give back, to serve our community, serve the team and serve the horseshoe. He’s a horseshoe guy through and through. He’s a great, great person.”
For his career, Allen has started all 26 games he’s appeared in, catching 72 passes for 915 yards and 11 touchdowns. He has also contributed on special teams with five tackles and a forced fumble. In 2012, Allen led all NFL rookie tight ends in receptions (45) and receiving yards (521), while setting a Colts single-season rookie record for receptions by a tight end.
Off the field, Allen lends his support to many charitable endeavors. As Player Executive for DREAM Alive, he serves not only as the professional face of the organization for at-risk youth, but also participates in program development and implementation. Allen donates his Colts Community ticket block to the Indianapolis Public Library Foundation and served as a spokesperson for the LIBRARYSTRONG campaign in partnership with the foundation. In support of Black History Month, he hosted a SUPER Read Challenge and donated two Colts season tickets as the grand prize.
Allen is involved with the NFL’s NO MORE Campaign, the 2014 Women’s Fund of Central Indiana Annual Dinner, Colts Community Tuesdays and Read Across America. He has also served as a guest speaker or attendee for Washington Irving School 14 – Indianapolis Public School ”All Honors Dinner”, School on Wheels’ “Education Celebration” and the White House 2014 Easter Egg Roll.
The award is named after Ed Block who was the head athletic trainer for the Baltimore Colts from 1954-1977. He served as trainer emeritus with the club until he passed away in 1983.
Past winners of the award dating back to 2000, include: DE-Cory Redding (2013), S-Antoine Bethea (2012), DE-Robert Mathis (2011), DE-Dwight Freeney (2010), DB-Marlin Jackson (2009), C-Jeff Saturday (2008), OG-Ryan Lilja (2007), WR-Reggie Wayne (2006), LB-Cato June (2005), LB-Gary Brackett (2004), DE-Chad Bratzke (2003), LB-Rob Morris (2002), QB-Peyton Manning (2001) and DT-Bernard Whittington (2000).
The 37th annual Ed Block Courage Award dinner is scheduled during March in Baltimore. Proceeds from the affair benefit the Ed Block Courage Award Foundation in Baltimore. The Ed Block Courage Award Foundation’s objective is to establish homes for abused children in each NFL city. Indianapolis established an Ed Block Courage home (Children’s Bureau) in October of 2000. The home is part of a national support network for abused children.
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Aaron Wilson covers the Ravens for The Baltimore Sun