Dec 6, 2020; Seattle, Washington, USA; Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson (3) throws during early pregame warmups against the New York Giants at Lumen Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

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Seahawks’ Wilson, Chiefs’ Kelce among Payton Award nominees

The 32 nominees for the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year were announced Thursday morning, culminating a 2020 that saw NFL players work toward ending racial inequality, providing millions of meals to the hungry, getting out the vote, helping amid the coronavirus pandemic — and more.

“This year has presented significant challenges for us all, from the ongoing global pandemic to the continued social injustices witnessed this year,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement. “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 team selects a player who has had a significant impact on the community through his philanthropy or other efforts. The award, to be presented during Super Bowl LV week, was established in 1970 and named after the late Chicago Bears running back in 1999.

The winner will receive a $250,000 donation to the charity of his choice, with the 31 other nominees receiving a charitable donation of up to $40,000.

Last year’s winner was Calais Campbell, now with the Baltimore Ravens. Five other active players have won the award: Drew Brees, Jason Witten, Thomas Davis, Larry Fitzgerald and J.J. Watt.

“My goal when I give back is to inspire people, to encourage people to believe that dreams are achievable if you put the work in,” Campbell said after receiving his 2019 award. “Everybody, and I mean everybody, can give back. Wherever you are in your life, it doesn’t matter where you are in your life, but reach back and help someone. It’s our duty to help our neighbors. Even if you can only give five minutes to someone in need, give it to them. That one-on-one quality time, that little bit of extra time can make a world of difference.”

The 2020 nominees:

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

–Field Level Media

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