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Minnesota's Adam Thielen Named Week 1 NFLPA Community MVP

Vikings receiver donates $50,000 for local school partnership that will benefit at-risk student-athletes.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Adam Thielen has been named Week 1 NFLPA Community MVP after launching a fall education achievement program at Brooklyn Center High School that will reward academic success with up to $50,000 in athletic resources for at-risk student-athletes. Through this partnership, Thielen and his wife, Caitlin, hope to encourage participation in sports while, more importantly, inspiring student-athletes to perform well in the classroom.

“I’m humbled and honored to be named NFLPA Community MVP as a member of the Minnesota Vikings,” Thielen said. “Minnesota has been our home for our entire lives, and we are blessed to have the ability to give back to a community that has given us so much over the years.”

On Sept. 10, the Thielens visited Brooklyn Center High just outside of Minneapolis to hand out new shoes to the 125 fall student-athletes who will benefit from this new program. Overall, the $50,000 contribution in athletic resources features:

  • $10,000 in sports gear, including new helmets, shoulder pads, cross country cleats, tennis balls and more;
  • a renovated weight room with more than $7,500 in new equipment; coverage of athletic fees for students in need;
  • a $1,000 scholarship to one student-athlete from each fall sports team for higher education expenses;
  • nutritional lessons and tips, including meal kits for each student athlete.

The academic incentives will be extended to fall student-athletes who maintain a GPA of at least 2.0 and finish their sports season. In doing so, the Thielens believe it will have an even greater impact on the Brooklyn Center community, where nearly 80 percent of the approximately 450 students were eligible for free or reduced lunch last year.

As former student-athletes themselves, the Thielens hope to expand their support to other schools throughout the Midwest while using Brooklyn Center as the flagship success story. They want every student to have the same opportunities in the classroom and on the athletic field, no matter their background or economic situation.

We look forward to continuing to provide support and resources to as many youth and families as possible,” Thielen said.

In keeping with the mission of The Thielen Foundation, which aims to create programs that empower individuals to reach their full potential, the Vikings receiver has frequently given back to his local community since entering the NFL. His foundation’s first partnership launched in September 2018, when the Thielens donated $100,000 toward additional programming for patients in the behavioral health unit of the University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital.

Thielen has also put on a football camp for more than 250 kids in the Twin Cities area; worked with Bolder Options, which is a youth wellness-based mentoring organization; and annually adopted a number of families in need through the Salvation Army Give Back program so that they can have a special Christmas experience.

In honor of Thielen being named this week’s Community MVP, the NFLPA will make a $10,000 contribution to The Thielen Foundation. Also, our supporting partner Pledge It has set up a crowdfunding campaign to benefit The Thielen Foundation. Supporters can pledge contributions based on Thielen’s season total in receptions, or they can make a flat donation.

Thielen, along with the other 2019 Community MVPs, will become eligible for this year’s Alan Page Community Award, which is the highest honor that the NFLPA can bestow upon a player.

The NFLPA Community MVP program recognizes NFL players who are making a positive impact in their local communities. Each week during the regular season, the NFLPA will celebrate one NFL player who has demonstrated a commitment to giving back to his community. Please visit the Community MVP page to read more about the program as well as the current and past winners.

2019 NFLPA Community MVP winners:

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Published on September 13, 2019

by Alexander Diegel

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