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Arik Armstead Named 49ers 2023 Nominee for Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year

To honor his extensive work in the community, with the team and the Armstead Academic Project, the 49ers have named Armstead as their 2023 Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year nominee, presented by Nationwide.

The San Francisco 49ers announced DL Arik Armstead as its nominee for the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award Presented by Nationwide. The Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award presented by Nationwide is the league's most prestigious honor and acknowledges NFL players who excel on the field and demonstrate a passion for creating a lasting positive impact beyond the game in their communities.

Armstead's fourth consecutive nomination demonstrates his steadfast dedication and commitment to the community. Since the Armstead Academic Project's (AAP) inception in 2019, the defensive lineman has helped raise and personally donated over $2 million to Sacramento and Bay Area youth. As a team captain, Armstead encourages his teammates to use their platform to support underserved communities, welcoming them by his side to empower and inspire.

Through his foundation, Armstead hosts story times, youth football camps, college field trips, free health and wellness fairs and provides resources, warm meals, and school supplies. The most notable feature of Armstead's dedication to the community is not just the number of lives he's impacted, but his commitment to real change. Armstead's ethos that "a zip code should not define student opportunity" is one that pushes him beyond event-based impact and into outcome-based programming to close critical academic gaps.

Over several years, Armstead has collaborated with nonprofits and educators to provide elementary youth in need of comprehensive academic support with targeted reading interventions by credentialed teachers. Armstead plans to scale this summer program to other Sacramento and Bay Area schools to close the literacy gap among third-grade students. Additionally, Armstead is creating a Career Camp Playbook to bridge the gap between youth need and employment opportunities to promote economic mobility for underserved youth nationwide.

"I really take my career as what I do on and off the field. I think they go hand in hand," said Armstead. "I want to use my blessing to bless others. I feel like it's my responsibility. When it's all said and done, I want to leave this earth a better place than when I was born. I think that's what we should all strive to do."

As a nominee, Armstead will wear a Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year helmet decal through the end of the season in recognition of his accomplishments on and off the field.

All 32 nominees will be recognized for their achievements during the week leading up to Super Bowl LVIII. The 2023 Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year winner will be announced during NFL Honors, a primetime awards special to air nationally on CBS on Thursday, Feb. 8th.

Each nominee will receive up to a $55,000 donation, and the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year award winner will receive a $250,000 donation to the charity of his choice. All donations are made possible by the NFL Foundation and Nationwide.

This year, fans are once again encouraged to participate in Nationwide's annual Charity Challenge, a social media and online contest that allows fans to show support for their favorite Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year nominee. Fans can vote on X (formerly Twitter) by posting #WPMOYChallenge along with the name/X handle of their chosen nominee or by voting directly on The nominee who receives the most collective hashtag mentions and votes will win an additional $35,000 donation from Nationwide to the charity of their choice, with the runner-up receiving $10,000 and the third-place winner receiving $5,000. Charity Challenge voting takes place from Dec. 5th to Jan. 8th.

In addition, fans can further amplify their support of Armstead by participating in an exciting campaign by Alltroo – an online fundraising platform started by former NFL tight end and 3-time Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year nominee, Kyle Rudolph. Through Alltroo, fans can support Armstead by entering an online fundraiser customized by each player for the chance to win special prizes and experiences, such as meet and greets, game tickets, sideline passes and more. One hundred percent of the proceeds raised through Alltroo's campaign will directly support the nominee's non-profit/charity of choice. For more information visit

For more information on the nominees and the award, please visit