My Cause My Cleats: A Touchdown for the T1D End Zone

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In the heart of the NFL season, some of the league’s brightest stars went beyond touchdowns and tackles to champion a cause close to their hearts—type 1 diabetes (T1D). As a part of the annual NFL “My Cause My Cleats” (MCMC) campaign, these players laced up custom-painted cleats, not just for the game but to raise awareness and funds for JDRF in support of T1D research.

The Players

This year, JDRF is honored to have the support of nine exceptional active and former players who either live with T1D or are passionate advocates for their loved ones with T1D, including Mark Andrews of the Baltimore Ravens; Orlando Brown, Jr. of the Cincinnati Bengals; DeAndre Carter of the Las Vegas Raiders; Jay Cutler, sports broadcaster and former NFL player; Blake Ferguson of the Miami Dolphins; Collin Johnson of the Chicago Bears; Chad Muma of the Jacksonville Jaguars; Nate Peterman of the Chicago Bears; and Kevin Radar of the Tennessee Titans. 

The NFL My Cause My Cleats Campaign

The My Cause My Cleats initiative, launched in 2016, provides NFL players with a unique platform to showcase their philanthropic passions. From Giving Tuesday’s unboxing day events to game days during weeks 13 and 14 of the season, players share videos and images of their custom-painted cleats, each telling a personal story and raising awareness for their chosen charities. My Cause My Cleats also allows players to donate their cleats to their charities or the NFL auction, with 100% of proceeds going towards their selected causes.

Educating through Advocacy

Beyond the game, the players’ involvement helps to educate people about type 1 diabetes, a condition that’s often misunderstood. By sharing their personal stories and advocating, they bring awareness to the daily challenges that people with T1D face. They also highlight how research advancements are empowering people with T1D to lead healthier lives and how it will ultimately bring cures for T1D.

Legacy of Support

Since the inception of the MCMC campaign, numerous NFL players and affiliates have championed T1D education, research and advocacy, including Cliff Avril, Beau Benzschawel, David Carr, Will Clarke, Keion Crossen, DeAndre Carter, Reid Ferguson, Elliott Fry, Jarvis Jenkins, Collin Johnson, Henry Mondeaux, Jaelan Phillips, Adam Schefter, Brandon Wilds, and Jonah Williams. Their collective support adds to the growing legacy of the NFL community rallying around JDRF’s mission and the T1D community.

As the NFL season continues, the impact of the MCMC campaign resonates far beyond the field. Through their incredible athleticism and support for JDRF, these players inspire fans to join the fight against T1D. Together, they’re scoring touchdowns and achieving victories in pursuit of a world without the disease.