Saints nominate Thomas as Man of the Year

The New Orleans Saints announced that running back Pierre Thomas is their 2013 Man of the Year and nominee for the NFL’s Walter Payton Man of the Year Award. The annual award takes into account what players do both on and off the field.

On the field, Thomas remains one of the NFL's most underrated offensive weapons. And he is making one of the biggest impacts of his seven-year career, with 500 rushing yards, a career-high 441 receiving yards and four touchdowns.

Off the field, Thomas has always been one of the most active Saints players in the community, through regular school and hospital visits and other charitable events, as well as through his iCan Foundation -- which was founded to help prevent and educate youth and adults about childhood obesity.

From my experience with Thomas over the years, this award is a no-brainer. He’s never been underrated in New Orleans in either capacity since he first broke out as an undrafted rookie out of Illinois in 2007. Thomas has always shown a great appreciation for the opportunity the Saints gave him and the role he’s earned.