Ahead of Sunday’s Super Bowl matchup in Las Vegas, the NFL held its annual awards ceremony, NFL Honors, Thursday night (Feb. 8). From the first honoree to the last, many of the football players praised Jesus in their speeches, crediting God for making their high-profile careers possible.
CJ Stroud Kicks Off NFL Honors by Praising God
As he’s done throughout his rookie season, Houston Texans’ quarterback C.J. Stroud thanked Jesus after being named Offensive Rookie of the Year at NFL Honors. “First and foremost, I want to give all glory and praise to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,” said Stroud, 22, after winning the night’s first award.
The Defensive Rookie of the Year award also went to a 22-year-old Houston player, defensive end Will Anderson Jr. “First, I just got to give all glory to God,” he said from the stage. “Without him, none of this is possible. He deserves all the honor and praise.”
Later, while thanking his coaches and teammates, Anderson said, “Thank y’all for helping me, bringing me closer to God, helping me show that his faith and his mercy and his grace [are] undeniable.”
The speeches by the offensive and defensive players of the year also featured shout-outs to God. San Francisco 49ers running back Christian McCaffrey, while accepting his trophy for Offensive Player of the Year, said, “First and foremost, I want to thank God. I feel so blessed to be standing up here right now.”
Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett, named Defensive Player of the Year, began his acceptance speech by saying, “First of all, I want to say all glory to the Most High. Without him, I would not be here in front of y’all today.”
NFL MVP and Walter Payton Man of the Year Winners Thank God
Also on Thursday, Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson, 27, won his second NFL Most Valuable Player award. The vote was nearly unanimous, at 49-1. The youngest two-time MVP in the modern era began his speech by saying, “First and foremost, I want to thank my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Without him, nothing is possible.”
The final award of the night, the NFL Walter Payton Man of the Year award, honors off-the-field excellence through community service. This year’s winner was Cameron Heyward, a defensive lineman for the Pittsburgh Steelers. The 34-year-old, who was introduced on Thursday by Prince Harry, has been his team’s Man of the Year nominee six times.