49ers news: Arik Armstead nominated for Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year award

Arik Armstead #91 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images)
Arik Armstead #91 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images) /

No stranger to being nominated, Arik Armstead is the 49ers’ recent nominee for the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year award for his work in the community.

The NFL announced all 32 team nominees for the annual Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year award today, and it shouldn’t be too big a surprise which player the San Francisco 49ers nominated.

Defensive tackle Arik Armstead.

It’s no surprise because this is now the third year in which Armstead has been the Niners’ nominee, and one can hope the third time will truly be a charm and provide the opportunity to take home what many consider to be the NFL’s most prestigious honor.

What did Arik Armstead do to be nominated for Walter Payton Man of the Year?

Armstead, who is originally from Sacramento, California, has been heavily involved in this Northern California community ever since joining San Francisco in Round 1 of the 2015 NFL Draft out of Oregon.

Those efforts have spread all over Northern California, too, and you can read more about his efforts from his Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year bio linked here and quoted below:

"Arik insists that EVERY student, no matter their socioeconomic status, has direct access to resources to thrive. He backs up that vision with his treasure, investing $250,000+ into his hometown of Sacramento for the second consecutive year to provide meaningful resources for over 500 low-income students – enrolling 190 youth in the Armstead afterschool and summer reading programs, providing 155 fifth and sixth graders access to a yearlong STEM college course, and preparing 170 high schoolers with college and career experiences. Despite formalizing his own nonprofit simultaneously, Arik has remained a constant at 49ers-driven community events, influential as a leader and captain."

In addition to his non-profit organizations, Armstead also hasn’t hesitated to get dirty tackling other objectives, such as providing hands-on relief to low-income communities in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Read More: Arik Armstead a case study in why stats don’t tell the whole story

True, Armstead has dealt with some bad injury luck for the bulk of the 2022 season. But that isn’t stopping him from being a force off the field, and his third nomination is a testament to those efforts.

The only San Francisco player to have won this prestigious award was wide receiver Anquan Boldin back in 2015, although Armstead surely has made a strong case to be the next 49ers player to earn the achievement.

The winner of the 2022 Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year award will be announced at the NFL Honors show before Super Bowl LVII.

One can only hope it’s Arik Armstead.

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