Marty Lyons Award

2013 Ring of Honor inductee, Marty Lyons, a former All-American defensive tackle from the University of Alabama, played his entire 12-year NFL career with the New York Jets as a member of the feared “Sack Exchange.” Early in his career, Lyons befriended and became a surrogate father to a 3-year-old boy suffering from an advanced illness. Three years later in the spring of 1982, the youngster’s death coincided with the sudden death of Lyons’ father and the birth of his first child, a healthy son. These experiences profoundly affected Lyons’ outlook on life, fame and his fellow human-being. With the encouragement and the assistance of his family and friends, he established a foundation dedicated to granting wishes of seriously ill children.

The Marty Lyons Foundation helps lift children’s spirits and lets the magic of hope lead their thoughts and dreams for the future. More than 3,000 wishes have been granted to children suffering from life threatening or terminal illnesses since the foundation was incorporated in 1982. Lyons was named the National Football League’s Man of the Year in 1984 for his work with the foundation. His efforts also led the New York Jets to name the Outstanding Community Service Award the Marty Lyons Award, which is presented to the player who gives from the heart through charity and community involvement (as voted by Jets staff).



1990 – Marty Lyons, DT/DE

1991 – Rob Moore, WR

1992 – Brad Baxter, FB

1993 – Bobby Houston, LB

1994 – Boomer Esiason, QB

1995 – Adrain Murrell, RB

1996 – John Paci, QB

1997 – Lorenzo Neal, FB

1998 – Leon Johnson, RB

1999 – Dwight Stone, WR

2000 – Ray Lucas, QB

2001 – Kevin Mawae, C

2002 – Damien Robinson, S

2003 – Marvin Jones, LB

2004 – Kareem McKenzie, T

2005 – Kevin Mawae, C

2006 – Erik Coleman, S

2007 – Jerricho Cotchery, WR

2008 – Tony Richardson, FB

2009 – D’Brickashaw Ferguson, T

2010 – Brad Smith, WR/KR

2011 – Dustin Keller, TE

2012 – Mike DeVito, DE