Congrats to @BIrvin_WVU11 for being named the @RAIDERS nominee for the #WPMOY award.— Fallon Smith C. (@FallonSmithNBCS) December 8, 2017
"If I had to do it over again I'd write my story exactly the same. I went through a lot of stuff, I've lived two lives, I lived the BJ life and now I'm Bruce... I'm a walking testimony" pic.twitter.com/q3qIsG9hmm
Bruce Irvin, the former West Virginia Mountaineer who terrorized quarterbacks in the Big East has found a new home in Oakland, California terrorizing quarterbacks in the NFL, like former Mountaineer signal caller Geno Smith. Yet, for all of Bruce’s dominance on the field, his charity work off the field has gotten him noticed by his colleagues, peers and the NFL.
Bruce Irvin has been named the Oakland Raiders Man of the Year and is now eligible for the national award, the Walter Payton Man of the Year. The Payton award recognizes a players accomplishments both on and off the field. The award was first established in 1970 and later renamed after the Chicago Bears Hall of Fame running back following his death in 1999.
Bruce Irvin has exemplified the character of the award by engaging in community activities throughout the year. For three years, Bruce has hosted the Bruce Irvin Football Clinic in Charleston, WV, allowing kids in his college state to learn the game of football from one of the best to ever wear the old gold and blue. Along with his football camp, Bruce supports his Oakland teammates and his former Seahawk’s teammates community endeavor. Bruce attended teammate Michael Crabtree’s in Dallas along with Justin Ellis’s camp in New Orleans.
Irvin has immersed himself in community outreach in 2017. On his off day, he volunteered with the Alameda County Community Food Bank’s Mobile Pantry with his teammates, helping distribute food to 157 low income families for a total of 564 people fed, 187 of which were children.
On the heels of a late night, cross country flight following the team’s Sunday Night Football game in Washington, DC, Irvin spearheaded a Monday morning visit to Oakland UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital that included the entire defensive line unit. In a testament to Bruce’s leadership, not a single member missed the trip despite running on just a few hours of sleep.
Starting in Week 14, the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year trophy silhouette will appear in uniform elements to further recognize past award winners and current nominees. Irvin will wear a Man of the Year helmet decal through the end of the season, in recognition of his accomplishments on and off the field.
Each team in the NFL nominates a player to become eligible for the national award. Three of the nominees will be selected as finalists for the national award. Finalists will be announced in January 2018. The winner will be announced in Minneapolis at NFL Honors, a two-hour primetime awards special to air nationally on Feb. 3, the night before Super Bowl LII, from 8-10 PM (ET and PT) on NBC.