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Super Bowl-bound Jalen Ramsey is committed to being a leader ‘both on and off the field’

The Rams cornerback goes the extra mile to help families in need, disadvantaged students and cancer fighters looking for a hero to inspire them.

Los Angeles Rams cornerback Jalen Ramsey has long been known as a terror to opposing offenses from the moment he entered the league. In 2021, he had yet another stellar campaign by making his fifth-consecutive Pro Bowl and making first team All-Pro honors for the third time in his career. Ramsey is arguably one of the top defensive players in the NFL for all his work on the field, yet his contributions off the field are just as impressive.

Ever since the Rams acquired him from the Jacksonville Jaguars in October 2019, Jalen has embraced the City of Angels with open arms. In his second year with the team, Ramsey ensured that the 2020 holiday season would be special for everyone by purchasing $20,000 worth of Vons gift cards that were distributed at 2nd Call’s Annual Turkey Distribution in South Los Angeles and Inglewood.

Then in October of this year, Ramsey partnered with The Athletes’ Corner to help provide 5,000 meals for every interception, sack, and forced fumble recorded by the entire Rams defense during the 2021-22 NFL season. The campaign — Feeding Families With Jalen Ramsey — doubles the number of meals provided whenever Jalen records an interception, sack, or forced fumble.

During the first game of the campaign against the Detroit Lions, LA’s defense recorded two interceptions and two sacks apiece. The most game-changing pick, both for the Rams and the needy families of Los Angeles, belonged to Ramsey whose heroics helped provide 10,000 meals alone. Overall, LA’s defensive contributions provided a whooping 25,000 meals to local food banks around Los Angeles.

Throughout his career, Jalen has always prioritized the importance of staying connected to his community. As proud as Ramsey is to represent the Rams on the field, he’s been just as passionate about touching the city of Los Angeles in the best way that he possibly can. The LA star believes his partnership with The Athletes’ Corner was the perfect way for him in being able to do this.

“We have a strong will to want to help others through our blessings,” Ramsey said. “This initiative helps me use my God given abilities as well as the platform He has blessed me with, to provide meals for those in need in the Los Angeles area. I am glad my teammates and I can help with such a great cause and I’m excited to be a part of it. Being a leader is having a commitment both on & off the field.”

Against the Houston Texans the following game in Week 8, the Rams recorded five sacks and an interception. That allowed Jalen and his campaign to help provide another 30,000 meals to food banks in Los Angeles. Through the first two weeks of his initiative, Feeding Families With Jalen Ramsey was able to provide 55,000 meals. Kelenna Azubuike, Co-Founder of The Athletes’ Corner and color commentator for the Golden State Warriors, is excited about the positive impact Ramsey’s initiative with The Athletes’ Corner will bring to LA.

“We all know that Jalen is an incredible football player on the field, but what he is doing off the field is nothing short of amazing,” Azubuike said. “We are thrilled to work alongside Jalen to fight hunger in the Los Angeles community, and we know we will change numerous lives together through this initiative.”

In the Divisional Round against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Rams defense had yet another stellar game which led to 25,000 more meals being provided. Prior to LA’s appearance in the NFC Championship game against the 49ers, Ramsey’s initiative has provided 305,000 meals to hungry families all over Los Angeles.

Jalen’s partnership with The Athletes’ Corner hasn’t been the only way he’s embracing his growing connection to Hollywood. During the week leading up to the Rams “Crucial Catch” game against the Arizona Cardinals at SoFi Stadium, team mascot Rampage surprised 10 Crucial Catch Captains who are all cancer fighters and survivors at their homes to present them with personalized jerseys and tickets to the game.

As part of the effort, Ramsey went the extra mile and surprised 11-year-old cancer fighter Silas Hoffman with a FaceTime call after receiving word that he’s his favorite player. Hoffman said that the Rams’ star cornerback has given him strength and inspiration during his battle with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Silas’ story served as a prime example of Jalen’s ability to reach out to struggling fans of any age and in any situation to provide them hope for a promising future.

Back in December 2020, the Rams teamed up with Operation Progress to host a virtual five-week Character Development series for middle school students in Watts, California. This series featured prominent LA players including Ramsey, Aaron Donald, Cooper Kupp, Johnny Hekker and Tremayne Anchrum.

The Character Development program was designed to help students recognize their potential to the fullest and inspire them to be positive contributors in their society. Every week, a Rams player joined 25 Operation Progress scholars to share their experiences and perspectives on specific character traits such as personal responsibility, perseverance, self-discipline and integrity.

Even though Ramsey has made numerous strides in helping the people of Los Angeles, his outreach hasn’t been solely limited to the city. In August 2020, Jalen announced that he was going to donate $1 million to Purpose Preparatory Academy in Nashville, Tennessee (which is his home state) to help the elementary charter school purchase necessary resources and expand its programming.

Back in May of last year, in honor of the National Charter School’s “30 Years Strong” celebration, the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools recognized Ramsey along with other young leaders as part of their 30 Under 30 Changemakers who’ve made a significant impact on the students they serve. As a donor, Jalen was deeply moved by the school’s focus on breaking structural barriers in hopes of making learning more meaningful by bringing about equity for students of color.

“I genuinely believe in the youth,” said Ramsey via Rams.com. “I believe educating the youth is the way that we will see change. Maybe not immediately, but it will come down the line. It will come at some point, and that’s what I genuinely believe in my heart.”

Jalen’s efforts to create quality educational opportunities for the disadvantaged students didn’t go unnoticed in his hometown of Nashville. He acknowledges that change is a gradual process but that build-up is most essential in creating more well-rounded students. Debbie Veney, senior vice president of marketing and communications at the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, echoed this sentiment when Ramsey was recognized for his dedication.

“We are thrilled to honor Jalen Ramsey as one of our 30 Under 30 ... His thoughtfulness and generosity to students at Purpose Prep in Nashville is a model to other young players in the league. His actions show how much he values education and that he wants to see innovative schools like this thrive.”

Following the Los Angeles Rams 20-17 win in the NFC Championship, Ramsey will make his first-ever Super Bowl appearance after just barely missing out with the Jaguars in the 2017 season. The thrill of a potential Lombardi Trophy is enough to drive any superstar player like LA’s All-Pro cornerback. However, all the contributions he has made around the community of Los Angeles and his hometown of Nashville are surely more satisfying than any championship ring.

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