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NFL and The American Cancer Society Broaden Crucial Catch Impact With Expanded Community Grants And New Sleep Number Partnership

The NFL continues its 15-year partnership with the American Cancer Society through the launch of Crucial Catch, the NFL's early detection and risk reduction initiative. The initiative is activated during games and in the community starting today through Week 6 of the NFL season.

Crucial Catch empowers fans to take their health into their own hands by getting screened for cancer, educating themselves on the importance of early detection, and discovering ways to reduce their cancer risk. Over the years, the NFL has contributed more than $27 million to the American Cancer Society through sales of Crucial Catch-branded merchandise, NFL auction items, and fundraising.

Funds raised aid the American Cancer Society's CHANGE grants, which support community health centers in all 32 NFL team markets by increasing access to low or no-cost cancer screenings in communities that need it most. CHANGE grants have contributed to more than 650,000 cancer screenings in under-resourced communities and have impacted over 1.3 million men and women with education, patient navigation and screening resources.

In addition to the CHANGE grants in each NFL market, the NFL and the American Cancer Society are piloting Links to Care Community Grants in select NFL team markets. Successful breast cancer screening programs require collaboration and well-coordinated approaches to deliver high-quality care from cancer screenings to treatment. Select team healthcare partners and CHANGE grant-funded community health centers are collaborating in the Links to Care pilot program to assess challenges within the screening to treatment process and develop action plans based on evidence-based practices. See the full list of CHANGE grant and Links to Care grant recipients here.

Sleep Number, an official Crucial Catch partner, has teamed up with the NFL to present The Defender, an online tool for fans to access cancer resources – including finding their local screen center, scheduling screening reminders, and having their cancer-related questions answered through the American Cancer Society's 24/7 chat and hotline. The Defender also features a quiz that analyzes user's health information to provide personalized recommendations on how they can reduce their cancer risk.

For the second season in a row, the Crucial Catch PSA is a part of the “We See You” campaign, focusing on the concept of Everyday Strength and featuring New Orleans Saints tight end Foster Moreau, who is in remission from a Hodgkin's Lymphoma diagnosis.  

“When I was diagnosed with cancer, I realized that it is a journey that you need to come up with a plan for quickly with the help of others and listen to the advice of professionals,” said Moreau. “I also saw firsthand the importance of early detection. I'm happy to use my experience and story to emphasize to others the importance of checkups and screenings.”

All 32 NFL teams support the Crucial Catch initiative year-round and 20 NFL players, including Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott, have joined the American Cancer Society as ambassadors to amplify the impact of Crucial Catch through appearances, fundraising campaigns and social media.

NFL Crucial Catch games will feature an array of in-game visuals such as Crucial Catch game balls, goal-post wraps and field-wall banners, branded on-field equipment for players, coaches, and officials among other activations to make the initiative come alive.