Ed Norris: Matt Birk, Man Of The Year
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We will be talking the Super Bowl to death as well as the Ravens “woulda, coulda, shoulda” for weeks. Can we just put that on hold for a moment & talk about something that really matters?
In a time where bad behavior is not just forgiven but sometimes admired it’s a welcome relief to remember that men like Matt Birk still play football. Matt was just awarded the Walter Payton Man of the Year for outstanding community contributions; specifically his efforts to improve literacy in our community. Lack of literacy is at the core of most of the serious problems we suffer in Baltimore. Consider that far fewer than half of our high school kids graduate and a good portion of those that do are not able to read at an acceptable level. That means no jobs, no future, and for many a criminal career for a lack of other options. He couldn’t have picked a more important cause in this town. Couple this award with the fact he is a Pro Bowl center who came to the NFL via …Harvard of all places and you have a very bright, philanthropic professional athlete. WOW, what a concept!
I have met Matt many times and for those of you that haven’t he’s even a nicer guy when you meet him in person. I’m not going to go on and on about his good qualities I’m just glad he was recognized with this award and remind everyone how proud they should be that he’s a Raven.
Congratulations Matt, well deserved.