Devonta Freeman's humble nature doesn't go unnoticed.
The Atlanta Falcons Pro Bowl running back was singled out by an Atlanta-area neighbor for a recent random act of kindness. As documented in the Tallahassee Democrat, the former Florida State standout was jogging in the neighborhood when he stopped to help 82-year-old Elenor Szendel unload her lawnmower. Freeman then posed for a picture with Szendel and her daughter-in-law.
Freeman discussed the topic when he addressed the media Wednesday afternoon.
"I was just walking in the neighborhood and I saw this old lady, and it was motivation to me because she was out there cutting her grass and trying to [remove] the bag from the lawnmower," Freeman said. "So, I was like, 'You can just get my number and call me. Whenever you need your grass cut, I'll do it for you.'
"The lady's daughter's got kids, and her kids -- I think she's got like [four] kids who went to FSU -- so they knew me. We took a picture and she sent it to them. But I didn't know they were going to put it on Instagram and it would go big how it is."
Stories like this are what teammates have grown accustomed to seeing from Freeman, who seems to appreciate life a little more after growing up in the rugged Miami projects.
"It doesn't surprise me; he has a big heart," right tackle Ryan Schraeder said of Freeman. "You can see that from the first time you meet him. He has a passion for people. Going back to the neighborhood he grew up in during the offseason, talking to kids, being a positive role model, he understands what it is all about. He lives it. We all admire the person he is."
Freeman often speaks out when a tragedy occurs in his hometown. When a 6-year-old Miami boy was shot and killed in February, Freeman took to Instagram to express his sorrow.
When I look at this picture, I see myself. A kid full of life, so much ahead of him. I'm from a community where some seem to lack love, or understand the importance of our youth. No parent should endure this pain. I pray for his family but I also pray for the young boys and girls in our community. We need to love one another more, be behind each other, and stop the violence. Why are we shooting each other ? How do we justify the death of a young 6 year old. I pray you R.i.p young king carter. #LibertyCityWarrior4Life
"One thing you can tell very quickly as soon as you get around Devonta is that he has a great heart," tight end Jacob Tamme said. "He cares about treating people right, so that story [with the elderly woman] doesn't really surprise me. He's a great teammate and a great kid."
Said nose tackle Joey Mbu, "He's just a good person overall. Throughout all the success [last year], he was the same down-to-earth, humble dude."