Drafting a New Legacy: How NFL Players Can Make a Lasting Impact Beyond Football

As newly minted professional players prepare for the NFL draft in Kansas City, it's important to start thinking about the bigger picture. While football is a thrilling and lucrative career, it's important to remember that there's more to life than what happens on the field. Creating a non-profit or foundation is a meaningful way to foster social impact and leave a positive legacy that extends far beyond your time as an athlete.

A Great Foundation

One great example of NFL players using their platform for good is through their foundations. Many current and former players have created non-profit organizations dedicated to causes they are passionate about. According to a report by Forbes, as of 2019, over 500 NFL players have created foundations. These foundations cover a wide range of causes, from education and youth development to healthcare and social justice.

One such foundation is the Malcolm Jenkins Foundation, created by two-time Super Bowl champion Malcolm Jenkins. The foundation's mission is to promote positive change in underserved communities, with a focus on education, youth development, and wellness. Through its various programs, the foundation has impacted over 10,000 individuals since its inception in 2010.

Another foundation making a difference is the Von Visions Foundation, created by current Buffalo Bills pro-bowler Von Miller. The foundation is dedicated to provide low-income students with eye care and fashionable corrective eyewear they need to be their best in the classroom and in life. The foundation has given out over $4.5 million in grants to organizations that align with its mission.

These foundations serve as an inspiration for new playmakers looking to make a difference. By creating their own non-profit or foundation, they too can have a lasting impact on their communities and beyond.

The Game Plan 

So, how can newly-signed NFL players go about creating their own non-profit or foundation? The first step is to choose a cause that they are passionate about. It's important to select a cause that aligns with their values and that they can commit to for the long haul. Once they have identified their cause, they should research existing organizations that are already working in their space. This will give them a better understanding of the landscape and help them identify gaps that they can fill.

After defining their mission and goals, these stars will need to create a business plan for their non-profit or foundation. This will involve figuring out their budget, fundraising goals, marketing strategy, and more. While it may seem daunting, there are plenty of resources available to help new non-profit founders get started.

Once they have their plan in place, players will need to incorporate their non-profit or foundation and register with the appropriate authorities. This is an important step to ensure that they are operating legally and ethically.


Finally, the rookies should build a team of like-minded individuals who are passionate about their cause. This team will help them execute their mission and ensure that their non-profit or foundation is successful in making a social impact.

"At Think Rubix & Co., we believe that collaboration is the cornerstone of creating meaningful change, stated Tristan Wilkerson, Founder of Think Rubix. “By strategically partnering with change makers from inception to impact, we empower them to turn their vision into a reality that leaves a lasting impact on the world." 

In conclusion, creating a non-profit or foundation is a purpose-driven way for new NFL players to ignite social impact and create a positive legacy that extends far beyond their time on the field. By following these steps and looking to existing foundations as inspiration, new players can create organizations that make a difference in their communities and beyond. As former NFL player Warrick Dunn once said, "It's not about you. It's about the impact you can make on other people's lives."