September 15 is the birth date of many famous folks, including Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Marino. On the 2010 calendar, that date was also a big day for Marino's gridiron brothers in the NFL Players Association.
In collaboration with the Muze Connects clothing company, the NFLPA has created the “Echoes Shirt” seen at right to benefit concussion and brain injury research and awareness.
New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees first wore an Echoes Shirt during his post-game press conference after last Thursday’s win over the Minnesota Vikings. Players league-wide received one in their lockers on Wednesday, and will be wearing them throughout the season to promote the issue.
The shirt, which features the famous Gladiator quote “What We Do in Life Echoes in Eternity,” is also available for public purchase now, with 100 percent of the proceeds from sales going directly to support brain injury research.
“The Echoes Shirt will provide our NFL players the ability to further impact the lives of other athletes in a profound way by helping to raise awareness of sports related concussions,” said Sean Morey, current Co-Chair of the NFLPA Executive Committee, in a press release sent out by the Association on Wednesday.
“Our NFLPA Mackey/White Traumatic Brain Injury Committee has been commissioned to educate and protect NFL players, support independent research, and change the culture of how we manage brain trauma in our game.”
This cause especially hits home for the 34-year-old Morey, a former special teams ace for the Patriots, Eagles, Steelers and Cardinals who retired on the eve of Training Camp 2010 due to the lingering effects of concussions he suffered during his 12-year career.
While the Echoes Shirt is a breakthrough for the NFLPA, it isn’t the first foray into public awareness for Muze Connects.
The “lifestyle brand born out of an appreciation and dedication to classic movie lines” has teamed with NBA star Ray Allen to design a “What Would Jesus Shuttlesworth Do?” t-shirt benefiting the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, and they’ve also worked with NHL Star Jeremy Roenick and MLB hurler Josh Beckett among others.
Now, they’ve entered the NFL arena, and the muzeconnects.com/NFLPA site features numerous photos of current and former NFL stars supporting the Echoes Shirt’s design.
“Given the support Muze Connects has received from so many NFL players, it is an honor to assist the NFLPA in raising money and awareness for such a critical issue,” said Bill Deacon, Founder and CEO of Muze Connects, in Wednesday’s press release.
“The issue of health and safety in sports touches all of us. We are thrilled to be a partner in this initiative.”
The notion of “What We Do in Life Echoes in Eternity” is an eerie truth in relation to brain injuries, and hopefully the Echoes Shirt it’s represented on will be a big step towards making that truth a little easier to handle.