In our Looking for Good stories, my intention is to highlight the good things done by great people.
Thus far, I’ve heard stories of impossibly challenging situations turned into extraordinary opportunities that champion important causes. These people have shone light on ways to overcome, to heal, to persevere.
Most of them toil in relative anonymity. Yet it is not fame they seek, but awareness.
The NFL, on the other hand, is more grandiose in style. They love self-promotion. No expense is spared on broadcast production value, on travel accommodations, on salaries.
The saving grace is that there are plenty of players, coaches, teams, and front office personnel who donate their time and money and celebrity to benefit causes. And in my opinion, that is the right thing to do. With fame, comes responsibility.
What I found particularly interesting was when the NFL broke its own insanely strict dress code to permit endorsement of charities. (When I say insanely strict, tremendous pains are taken before a game to ensure that every piece of gear worn by every player is compliant with their standards.)
The price? Let’s just say a uniform transgression is a fineable offense.
This is another reason the NFL’s My Cause, My Cleats campaign is a welcome one. Last season, players were permitted to wear custom-designed footwear (on the field and in the game!), designed to publicize their personal causes. Here’s a link to a colorful photo gallery of these custom kicks.
Also, check out #mycausemycleats to support players’ charitable causes and to read more about how post-game, these cleats are auctioned for charity.
I love the NFL for its adherence to rules, but even more when it bends them a little for something as important as giving back.