Buffalo Bills linebacker Tyrel Dodson was named the Week 16 NFLPA Community MVP, with the announcement coming on Friday, December 22.
Dodson’s selection as NFLPA Community MVP was borne out of an act of kindness and philanthropy that saw Dodson pay it forward through outreach to four single mothers and their children during the holidays this year.
Dodson’s wish was to make the holidays special and stress-free for these four families by treating each mom to a $500 shopping spree to tackle wish lists, and providing Christmas trees, ornaments, and more to each family.
Joining Dodson to help during the shopping spree were fellow Bills linebackers Terrel Bernard, Dorian Williams, Baylon Spector, and Tyler Matakevich.
In an article through the National Football League Players Association (NFLPA) website, Dodson said of receiving the commendation:
“‘I’m honored to be recognized for something that I love to do,” Dodson said. “I love giving back and finding ways to help people who are impacted by some of the same things that had an impact on my life.’”
As someone raised by a single mother, giving back to other families fully dependent on a mother’s love and support means the world to Dodson, and allows him to return to his roots.
Through the Tyrel Dodson Foundation, Dodson’s philanthropy casts a wide net, focusing on the Buffalo area as well his native Franklin, TN. In addition to continued extensive efforts to provide outreach to area youth and families in need, Dodson’s recent charitable efforts have included an event through Friends of Night in Western New York that raised $10,000 to provide snow relief for people enduring homelessness, and in providing medical-grade air purifiers to residents at the Brothers of Mercy retirement home.
Per the NFLPA website’s article:
“In honor of Dodson being named this week’s Community MVP, the NFLPA is making a $10,000 contribution to his foundation or charity of choice. In turn, Dodson will take part in a virtual or in-person visit to a school or children’s hospital.”
As a beneficiary of the NFLPA Community MVP award, Dodson joins other recipients from this season who will be eligible for this year’s Alan Page Community Award. Buffalo Bills safety Damar Hamlin was last year’s recipient of the Alan Page Community Award — the highest honor bestowed to a player through the NFLPA — last season.
Tyrel Dodson’s desire to improve the lives of those in his community serves as a reminder of the many ways we can help to make others’ holiday season brighter than expected.