The character of a society is reflected by the people it chooses to admire. Professional athletes are often picked as recipients of that admiration
In many ways, they deserve it. They have beaten huge odds to play sports professionally. Nearly all of them possess the strong work ethic required to maintain the level of excellence demanded by membership into an elite group of athletes.
That being said, because of their vast exposure, sports figures are also looked upon as purveyors of society's mores.
Unfortunately, many of them are unwilling or unable to meet the challenge.
The NFL is not exempt from its share of individuals who fail the character test. From allegations of sexual assault to being proprietors and accomplices to the destruction of life, some NFL players have unfairly burdened the rest of the players in the league with guilt by association.
For the most part, however, NFL players are good individuals that make positive contributions to our society. In some cases, these players go above and beyond what is expected. As such, they are people who every parent can feel comfortable with their children admiring.
My purpose wasn't to slight them—they are good men who have done outstanding work. My purpose was to honor five players who may not be superstars on the field, but are Hall of Famers off of it.