ENGLEWOOD, Colo. – As a part of the Salute to Service campaign, the NFL and the USAA honor one individual with the Salute to Service Award for demonstrating demonstrate an exemplary commitment to honoring and supporting the military community.
Each team has a nominee for the award and the Broncos' nominee is cornerback Champ Bailey. The finalists for the award will be announced in January and the winner will be recognized at the "3rd Annual NFL Honors" awards show in New York City on Fox the night before Super Bowl XLVIII.
Last summer, Bailey spent time with the Thunderbirds and flew around in a F-16 pulling nine G's.
"From the outside looking in, you always have this level of appreciation but when you get out here and experience it a little bit it just goes up even more," Bailey said during his visit with the Thunderbirds. "I appreciate everything these guys do – I don't know how they do half the stuff they do but that's part of their job and I'm glad they're doing it."
Bailey, alongside linebacker Von Miller also went on a USO Tour earlier this year. With the USO, Bailey visited U.S. Military bases throughout the Middle East. That week-long tour was the continuation of a 45-year-old tradition of NFL players making morale-building trips overseas.
This year is the third time the award has been given out. Chicago Bears cornerback Charles Tillman was named last year's winner and the late Titans owner K.S. "Bud" Adams, a World War II veteran, won the inaugural award.