Parish native nominated for prestigious award

Kyle Riviere
Gonzales Weekly Citizen
Houston Texans safety and Dutchtown alum Justin Reid.

Over the years, former Dutchtown football standout Justin Reid has always made Ascension Parish proud with his on-the-field exploits, but he also continues to admirably represent the community off the field as well.

His many acts of kindness and charity have now been recognized across the NFL. 

Reid has been named the Houston Texans’ nominee for the league’s 2021 Walter Payton Man of the Year award—which is the NFL’s most prestigious honor.

After earning the nomination, Reid said on Twitter, “What an honor. I’m overjoyed to represent the award and stand with the great men doing great things on the field and in the community.”

The award was first established in 1970, and it was later renamed after the late Chicago Bear Hall of Fame running back in 1999.

The Man of the Year award goes to a player who has contributed at a high level to community service activities off the field.

In a statement, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said: “The Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award is the league’s most prestigious honor, and these 32 men represent their many teammates who do incredible things in their communities. Their unwavering commitment to their hometowns and team communities embodies Walter’s spirit of giving back in a way that makes us all incredibly proud of the work they are doing every day.”

Each of the league’s 32 teams have a nominee. All nominees will receive up to a $40,000 donation in their name to the charity of their choice. The winner will receive a $250,000 donation to their charity. 

The winner of the Man of the Year award will be revealed during “NFL Honors,” which airs on Feb. 10, on ABC.

Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson won the award last year.

Reid is hoping to become the Texans’ second-ever Man of the Year winner. Back in 2017, defensive lineman J.J. Watt won the award in large part due to his work raising money for victims of Hurricane Harvey.

Reid did similar work back in September.

Following the catastrophic landfall of Hurricane Ida, he organized an event at NRG Stadium in Houston dedicated to relief. City residents showed up and donated money and supplies.

When it was all said done, Reid had raised $10,000 and gathered enough supplies to fill two 18-wheeler trucks.

After his work with the drive, the NFL Players Association named Reid the 2021 season’s first Community MVP, a weekly award given to players across the league. 

In addition to his hurricane-relief efforts, Reid also gives to Candlelighters Childhood Cancer Family Alliance, The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Houston and Kids’ Meals.

Reid is a Dutchtown graduate. He went on to play football at Stanford, where he was a three-year starter and All-Pac-12 performer.

Reid went on to be drafted by the Houston Texans with the 68th pick (third round) in the 2018 NFL Draft.

He’s in his fourth season with the Texans. Reid has started since he was a rookie. He had 75 tackles, two sacks and four pass breakups in 2020.

So far this season, Reid has 49 tackles, four pass breakups, two interceptions and one forced fumble.