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By most measures, the NFL’s “My Cause My Cleats” campaign in Week 13 was a rousing, unquestioned success for the league. And after it appeared that the Cleveland Browns and Tennessee Titans might miss out, it turns out that they’ll get to participate as well.
Thirty of the 32 teams were in action this past week, and they were able to express themselves and wear custom cleats to help display causes that were important to them. Several charities got worthy attention they might not otherwise have received, and we only can assume that a lot of attention and money was raised this past weekend. Good for the league and the players who were involved.
Early on Monday, it appeared that the two teams on bye in Week 13 — the Browns and Titans — were not able to. Neither team had been granted permission to wear the custom cleats until Monday night. NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy told Yahoo Sports that the issue has been resolved.
“We have spoken to both the Titans and Browns,” McCarthy wrote in an email. “Players from the two teams on a bye last week may participate in My Cause/My Cleats in Week 14. They can wear the cleats in game.”
This was the right move — and the only move — for the NFL. Good on them for resolving it.
Two Titans, cornerback Jason McCourty and tight end Delanie Walker, planned on doing it anyway whether they were allowed to, per ESPN.com. The Titans face the Denver Broncos and the Browns host the Cincinnati Bengal in Week 14.
McCourty and his twin brother, New England Patriots safety Devin McCourty, have a joint charity called Tackle Sickle Cell. Devin was able to brandish his shoes Sunday against the Los Angeles Rams. Jason now will be able to do the same this week against the Bengals.
Walker’s cleats honor two foundations close to his heart — MADD and Delanie Walker Gives Back. Browns receiver Terrelle Pryor was worried he would not be able to honor his charitable cause as well, posting on Twitter his frustration over the league’s stance that Week 13 — and only Week 13 — would be designated for the cleat tributes without being subject to a fine. This was before the league allowed permission.
Since my gram passed away from cancer I'd support that cause. I wish I could still do it. https://t.co/fSsyGlsHuk
— Terrelle Pryor SR (@TerrellePryor) December 4, 2016
The league likely realized its mistake in not scheduling cleat week when all teams were in action. The good news is that it fixed it.
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