Former Wisconsin Badger star J.J. Watt is one of three remaining finalists for the NFL’s Walter Payton Man of the Year award, along with Carolina Panthers tight end Greg Olsen and Baltimore Ravens tight end Benjamin Watson.
The Houston Texan defensive end is in his seventh NFL season and is a three-time Defensive Player of the Year. He is hoping to receive the prestigious award that recognizes a player’s contribution in his community and to society in general. The winner will be revealed on Feb. 3 at NFL Honors, when The Associated Press announces its individual NFL awards.
Humbled & honored to even be mentioned in the same breath as Walter Payton. Also happy to share the nomination with @BenjaminSWatson and @gregolsen88 who are both extremely deserving. This is so much bigger than just one man. It’s about the good in all of humanity.
— JJ Watt (@JJWatt) January 21, 2018
As Texas continued its rebuilding efforts from the devastating effects of Hurricane Harvey, Watt raised a whopping $37 million for flood victims in just 19 days. He began with a donation of $100,000, with hopes of raising an additional $100,000. Watt quickly exceeded his initial goal as his online fundraising campaign got worldwide attention from other athletes, celebrities and organizations.
“For me, this nomination is about so much more than one man,” Watt told The Associated Press. “It’s about the hundreds of thousands of people who helped donate to those who went through an extremely difficult time and rose above it all. I also know this is about honoring the city and its people.”