Vikings fans are showing appreciation for an act of sportsmanship by Saints punter Thomas Morstead by donating thousands of dollars to his charity.
After the Vikings clinched a win over the Saints with a touchdown on the final play of their NFC Divisional Round playoff game, NFL rules forced Minnesota to kick an extra point despite already leading 29–24 with no time remaining. With the Saints' fate sealed, Morstead, nursing a rib injury, led a group of New Orleans players back onto the field as Minnesota lined up to kick.
Morstead sustained the injury on Saints' first punt as he brought down Vikings return man Marcus Sherels. He would later tell reporters about the extent of pain he played through in the game.
"The whole first half was a grind," Morstead told reporters. " I couldn't breathe and was just panting, short, shallow breaths the whole first half. I sounded like a dying dog."
Amazed at the news of donations flooding in, Morstead pledged to donate 100% of funds raised from Vikings fans to the Child Life department at Children's Hospital in Minnesota.
In addition to devoting funds to the Children's Hospital, Morstead also promised to personally fly to Minneapolis during Super Bowl week if donations reached a goal of $100,000.
Morstead started the foundation along with his wife, Lauren, in 2012. The mission of What You Give Will Grow is to assist in the treatment and supporting care of cancer patients and children's cancer programs.
Donations are currently over $70,000 and climbing.