The 2015 season will mark the fifth annual Salute to Service Award presented by USAA. This year, the nominee for the Redskins is Andre Roberts. Andre is the son of two members of the U.S Army, so appreciation for the military is a way of life for him. After high school, Andre decided to attend The Citadel for its combination of physical challenges and military discipline.
"That's one of the things about The Citadel...when you do play a sport there you have to do the athletic part of it and do the military stuff in school," he said. "It's another element that makes it a little tougher than most schools. Waking up early every day, wearing uniforms all the time, having inspections. It easily helped me in terms of discipline. I have an appreciation for the military and what they do, and I thought playing there and experiencing (the military program) would show my appreciation. I didn't think it would be as tough as it actually was, but I made it through and got my degree."
Balancing military requirements, educational goals, and athletic obligations was not easy. But Roberts is convinced it has helped him, not just in his NFL career, but throughout his entire life. Off the field, Andre is involved with football camps for military children. The camps all take place on military bases. They bring the community together and give the kids a chance to meet some of their athletic heroes. Andre himself has hosted five of these camps and has attended many camps hosted by other athletes.
The Salute to Service award is one way the NFL and USAA recognize and honor our nation's military. Each nominee supports the military, often through private events that are not widely publicized. During "Salute to Service" month, USAA and the NFL give fans the opportunity to honor the military by doing the following:
- Join USAA's social media salute to service on Twitter and Facebook ("Salute Our Military" tab)
- Military can win a chance to go to Super Bowl 50 ("Win Super Bowl Tickets" tab)
- Watch NFL players share why they choose to salute certain military branches with their selection ("Why We Salute" tab)
So follow this link to show your support, see the nominees, and vote.