Carolina Panthers Outside Linebacker Thomas Davis Wins 2016 Bart Starr Award

Thomas Davis to receive Bart Starr Award at the 29th Annual NFL-Sanctioned Super Bowl Breakfast
Saturday, February 6, 2016 | 8:00am | Hilton Union Square, San Francisco

San Francisco, CA (Jan. 6, 2016) – Carolina Panthers Outside Linebacker, Thomas Davis has been chosen by his National Football League (NFL) peers to receive one of the sport’s most prestigious honors, The Bart Starr Award, given annually to a player who exemplifies character and leadership on and off the field.

Davis will receive the Bart Starr Award in person at what is widely considered one of Super Bowl weekend’s premier events, the Athletes in Action Super Bowl Breakfast. Through this honor, Davis will join the list of Bart Starr Award winners that includes Peyton Manning, Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees, Brent Jones, Kurt Warner, Aeneas Williams, Jason Witten, London Fletcher and Trent Dilfer.

“It means a lot to win the Bart Starr award, and hearing that I won it from Mrs. [Cherry] Starr was exciting,” Davis said. “To be recognized for an award that is voted on by my fellow players and carries Mr. Starr’s name speaks volumes. I’m truly honored to be selected.” 

The Thomas Davis Defending Dreams Foundation is built on the principles of “Educate, Empower, Defend” and strives to encourage students to develop the essential life and social skills that will make them leaders of tomorrow. The Thomas Davis Youth Leadership Academy (TDYLA) equips middle school age youth with the practical skills needed to become productive, self-fulfilled and achievement-oriented young adults and community leaders. The program involves the whole-child, extended family and the community. It incorporates a school-to-work focus, academic skill development and leadership development. 

Davis was the recipient of the 2014 Walter Payton Man of the Year Award. The Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year award is given annually by the NFL honoring a player's volunteer and charity work, as well as his excellence on the field.  Davis has played for the Carolina Panthers since 2005.

While Davis has won the 2016 Bart Starr Award, DeMarcus Ware (Denver Broncos) and Benjamin Watson (New Orleans Saints) were selected by their NFL peers as finalists for the honor, in recognition of their outstanding character and community contributions.

An anticipated 1,500 business executives will attend the event, presented by Athletes in Action and the Super Service Challenge, to watch Davis receive the Bart Starr Award and hear stories of faith and football from NFL players past and present. Program guests will include Bart Starr, Jr. (son of Super Bowls I and II MVP Bart Starr), Tony Dungy (Super Bowl Champion Coach), Benjamin Watson (New Orleans Saints), Roger Staubach (HOF 1985), Mike Ditka (HOF 1988), Jerry Kramer (Green Bay Packers, 1958-1968) and emcee Brent Jones (San Francisco 49ers 1987-1997).

To purchase corporate and priority tables, or individual tickets, visit or call 800-416-9472. 

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The NFL-sanctioned Athletes in Action Super Bowl Breakfast has taken place in the Super Bowl host city every year since 1988, drawing sellout crowds to hear from some of sport’s biggest names. The Bart Starr Award, presented at the breakfast, honors Starr’s lifelong commitment to serving as a positive role model to his family, teammates and community. The winner of the Bart Starr Award is determined by NFL-player balloting at the end of the regular season, making it one of only two individual honors selected by the players themselves.