Aaron Rodgers didn't have his finest season on the field for the Packers this past year, but off the field, he was still an MVP. Last April, he went to India with the Starkey Hearing Foundation to help install hearing aids for those in need (and hopefully turned the Dalai Lama into a Packers fan in the process). Then there his involvement with the Wounded Warrior Project (WWP), which the star quarterback wrote about this week for The Players Tribune.
In the piece, titled "Something Bigger," Rodgers explains his personal connection to our country's veterans (his grandfather was active duty in the Air Force during WWII, coming home with a Purple Heart and Silver Star after getting shot down and spending nine months as a prisoner of war) before pivoting to the Wounded Warrior Project, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping wounded veterans – whether recovering from physical or mental ailments – reacclimatize to life back home. He talks about his interactions and golf outings with these veterans, what the WWP means to those it serves and what the work means to him.
Here's a brief clip from Rodgers recollecting one particular golf outing alongside a group of Wounded Warriors:
"I remember standing there, watching them hit balls. One warrior was a double-leg amputee. Others had lost an arm, or an eye, or were overcoming various other disabilities and challenges. And while I found myself marveling at their ability to hit the ball, what really struck me was the joy that these men and women took in getting back to doing something they had loved to do before they were in the service – before their injuries.
"What I took from that experience was the idea of perspective. How special the little things are – simple things, like the ability to hit a golf ball.
"Things many of us take for granted.
"There are a lot of folks out there who have given their lives or their livelihood for a cause that they believe is bigger than they are."
I'll admit to not being a particularly big fan of The Players' Tribune; most pieces are basically self-written press releases for athletes, ad speak and inspirational Gatorade commercial jargon disguised as a personal peak behind the curtain. (This particular piece is a part of a sponsored series from Sharpie, who thankfully mostly gets out of the way.) But Rodgers' piece is a thoughtful tribute to a cause that means a great deal to him – and most importantly, a bright spotlight cast on a group doing great and essential work for those who do so much for our country.
Take a read here – and watch the accompanying video, which was posted last year.
As much as it is a gigantic cliché to say that one has always had a passion for film, Matt Mueller has always had a passion for film. Whether it was bringing in the latest movie reviews for his first grade show-and-tell or writing film reviews for the St. Norbert College Times as a high school student, Matt is way too obsessed with movies for his own good.
When he's not writing about the latest blockbuster or talking much too glowingly about "Piranha 3D," Matt can probably be found watching literally any sport (minus cricket) or working at - get this - a local movie theater. Or watching a movie. Yeah, he's probably watching a movie.