Nate Burleson named Ed Block Courage Award recipient

Posted Sep 20, 2013

Burleson will be honored at the Detroit Lions Courage House Dinner Oct. 1 at Ford Field

Nate Burleson has won his fair share of awards over an NFL career that spans 11 years.

Nate BurlesonWR Nate Burleson (Photo: G.Smith/Detroit Lions)

All of his trophies and awards are kept in his basement at home and there’s one he said that always catches his eye first. It’s the Ed Block Courage Award he won in Seattle in 2009.

The award honors players who overcome a hardship and is voted on by the training staff and fellow players.

In 2009, Burleson won the award after tearing his ACL while playing for Seattle.

Burleson will have to make a little more room in the trophy case for one more Ed Block Courage Award, as he’s once again earned the honor for his recovery from a broken leg suffered last year on Oct. 13 in Chicago.

"I wasn’t expecting it at all," Burleson said of being named Detroit's recipient. "Even though this recovery was harder than my ACL. That’s why I’m so appreciative.

"I didn’t go around saying how hard it was. I just showed up with a smile, knowing that I had a long road ahead of me, and for my peers ad training staff to vote me is a big deal. It’s humbling."

Burleson dealt with surgery and an atrophied right leg after being in a cast for nearly two months. It was a long road back this offeseaon, but through the first two regular season games, he leads the team with 13 receptions for 123 yards.

He will be honored at the Detroit Lions Courage House Dinner Oct. 1 at Ford Field.

The national Ed Block Courage Award Dinner for NFL recipients from all 32 teams will be held early next year in Baltimore. The award is named in honor of the late Ed Block, former athletic trainer for the Baltimore Colts, who devoted much of his time and money helping abused children.

Former Detroit Lions head athletic trainer Kent Falb will also be honored as the recipient of the Ricky Sandoval Award, which recognizes individuals that have made contributions both in sports and in the community. The award is named in honor of the late Lions’ director of security who lost his battle with pancreatic cancer in 2009.

Falb was a Lions athletic trainer for 35 years as well as a close friend of Ed Block’s. He’s the executive assistant for the Professional Football Athletic Trainers Society (PFATS) and is on the Ed Block Courage Award Foundation, Inc. National Advisory Board.