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Thomas Morstead thanks Vikings fans for donations

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  • By Around The NFL staff NFL.com
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Thanks to Thomas Morstead's professionalism and the kindness of Minnesota Vikings fans, the Children's Minnesota Child Life Program will be receiving a generous donation from the New Orleans Saints punter's personal foundation the week of the Super Bowl.

Morstead and his foundation, What You Give Will Grow, have raised more than $165,000 in donations for the charity, which supports children battling cancer. Vikings fans encouraged one another to donate to the foundation after seeing how Morstead conducted himself during the final play of the Saints' gut-wrenching playoff loss Sunday.

"I'm just totally humbled by this," Morstead in a video after meeting the foundation's $100,000 goal. "I might be forced to root for you guys all the way through the Super Bowl now. Just totally blown away. Thank you very much."

After Stefon Diggs scored the winning touchdown as time expired to propel the Vikings into the NFC Conference Championship Game, Saints players left the field thinking the game was over. However, the Vikings still needed to attempt the extra point, and officials had to get Saints players back on the field.

Vikings fans immediately noticed Morstead as the first Saints player to return. Despite dealing with a cartilage injury to his ribs earlier in the game, the punter lined up special teams for the final play of the game.

"What You Give Will Grow was built on the thought that giving back, at any level, makes a difference not only to those receiving the gesture, but in regards to inspiring others to do the same," Morstead said. "It's humbling to have fans from an opposing team doing something like this -- it just shows that football is more than a game and it really is a community. Minnesota fans had no idea when they made donations that it would come back to their own community, but what you give does really grow and we're honored to be able to support the child life program at Children's Minnesota -- this is what our foundation is all about."

Morstead said he will make a check presentation to the Children's Minnesota Child Life Program during the week of the Super Bowl.

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