Former Ohio State player Cam Heyward named Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year

Former Ohio State great and current Pittsburgh Steeler, Cameron Heyward, was named the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year on Thursday evening. The award is considered to be the highest honor any player can receive and is given in recognition of off field community service.

Heyward has long been involved in giving back to the city of Pittsburgh since being drafted in the first round in 2011 by the Steelers. The defensive lineman started Cam’s Kindness Week which serves a wide variety of areas in the community. He has also done work with The Caring Place which supports grieving families who have experienced loss. You may remember, Cam’s own father, Craig “Ironhead” Heyward, passed away when Cam was just 16 years of age.

This is the first time that Heyward has won the award even though he’s been nominated by the Steelers five times before. Heyward had this to say about giving back via

“For me it’s about trying to impact my community. Giving young people a chance and connecting through this platform. I am lucky enough to play for an organization that allows you to do that.”

A donation of $250,000 will be made to the Heward House Foundation which was founded in 2015 in honor of his late father. The organization serves underprivileged areas in the Pittsburgh area.

Heyward played at Ohio State from 2007-2010. He ended his career in Scarlet and Gray with 163 tackles, 37.5 tackles for a loss, 15.5 sacks, and two forced fumbles in 52 games played.

Beyond the stats and illustrious NFL career, Heyward is leaving a legacy that will last long beyond his playing days.

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Story originally appeared on Buckeye Wire