Deshaun Watson, a rookie, is the starting quarterback for the Houston Texans. Last year, he led Clemson to the national championship. This year, his pro career is off to a good start.
Watson’s paycheck for his first NFL game was $27,000. Instead of pocketing the money, he divided it into three and gave $9,000 apiece to three of the team’s cafeteria workers who lost their possessions when their homes were flooded by Hurricane Harvey.
“Anything else y’all need, I’m always here to help,” Watson told the women.
Eleven years ago, Watson and his family were the beneficiaries of generosity by then-NFL player Warrick Dunn. At the time, Watson, along with his mother and three siblings, lived in a small, cramped apartment in Gainesville, Ga. One day, Deshaun brought home a Habitat for Humanity note that listed steps to home ownership. His mother pursued them, spending more than 300 hours helping build new houses.
Through his foundation, Dunn was able to surprise the Watson family with a furnished home with four bedrooms, two baths, and even a full refrigerator. Years later, Watson would say, “I felt grown having my own room, just having my own bed, not really being squished, not really worrying about someone sneaking up on me, it was a great moment, a special moment.”
Now, with his first NFL paycheck, Watson has taken the opportunity to give back.
Watson and Dunn aren’t the norm, either among NFL players or the general population, but they aren’t alone among pro football players. A number of Washington Redskins, past and present, contribute generously to worthy causes in the District of Columbia and suburbs.
Although the Redskins statement before Sunday night’s game has received ridicule from leftist sportswriters, the team wasn’t off base when it said: “We are proud of the players, coaches and fans of the Washington Redskins for all that they have done to improve the lives of others in neighborhoods all across our region.”