The Indianapolis Colts this morning announced the 2014 recipient of a prestigious award, the Ed Block Courage Award. It is voted on by teammates and this year the Colts voted to give the award to tight end Dwayne Allen.
The award is given each year to a player who demonstrates great courage both on and off the field, and each of the NFL's 32 teams recognize a player for the honor. It is named after Ed Block (who would have guessed?), and Block served as head athletic trainer for the Baltimore Colts from 1954-1977. For the Colts, notables such as Cory Redding (2013), Antoine Bethea (2012), Robert Mathis (2011), Dwight Freeney (2010), Jeff Saturday (2008), Reggie Wayne (2006), Gary Brackett (2004), Peyton Manning (2001), and several others have all been named the Colts' recipient of the award.
Allen is in his third season with the Colts after being a third round draft pick in 2012 and has appeared in 26 games, catching 72 passes for 915 yards and 11 touchdowns. He's in the midst of a fantastic season this year, as he has caught 26 passes for 374 yards and a team-high 7 touchdowns through nine games. His impact goes way beyond just the receiving stats, however, as he's emerging as one of the best blocking tight ends in the league and a guy who does multiple different things in the Colts' offense. He missed all but one game last year with a hip injury, and his absence was clearly felt by the team in many ways.
He has really emerged as a leader by example in the locker room, and off the field he's involved in a variety of things, including DREAM Alive to help at-risk youth, the NFL's NO MORE campaign, raising awareness of domestic violence, the LIBRARYSTRONG campaign, and several others.
Allen called the honor "humbling," adding that, "It's even more humbling knowing that it was voted on by my peers and knowing that they think of me in such a way to reward me. I never serve the community with the thought of receiving anything back and I always try to serve to the best of my ability. I'm truly grateful."
Head coach Chuck Pagano called Allen "selfless" and said that, "he's a great player but he's a better person." Pagano said that, "he's a horseshoe guy through and through. He's a great, great person."
If there's a more deserving guy on the team, I can't think of it. Allen has developed an outstanding reputation both on and off the field and is really passionate about giving back to the community. He does things the right way and is exactly what you want in both a player and the recipient of this award. If we recognize it you can be certain his teammates do, and they've voted him as the Colts' 2014 Ed Block Courage Award winner. Congrats to Dwayne Allen on the prestigious award.