- Calvin Watkins, ESPN Staff Writer
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The award recognizes a players' off-the-field work in addition to what he does on-the-field.
"I am extremely flattered to be chosen the 2012 Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year from such an esteemed group of nominees," Witten said in a statement. "I work hard every day not only to be a success on the football field and a credit to my team -- but to be a good husband, father, son, grandson, teammate -- to be the kind of man that is as respected as Walter Payton was. Like others before me, I have a great opportunity as an NFL player to make a difference in the lives of others. It is honestly humbling to be recognized in such a manner for simply doing what I feel is right and human. I am fortunate to have a great support system in my family, the Dallas Cowboys and the NFL which allows me to make an impact in the communities and with people who love our game."
Jarrett and Brittney Payton, Walter Payton's children, will honor Witten before kickoff of Super Bowl XLVII between San Francisco and Baltimore.
Witten is involved in numerous non-profit organizations which include Jason Witten's SCORE Foundation, which helps people deal with domestic violence, and he's the Cowboys' spokesperson for NFL Play 60.
Witten also hosts a football camp at the University of Tennessee.
He becomes the third Cowboys player to win the Man of the Year award, which recently was renamed Walter Payton Man of the Year award after the late Chicago Bears running back.
Troy Aikman won it in 1997 and Roger Staubach picked it up in 1978.