Since being drafted with the No. 5 overall pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, Eric Berry has had a long journey.
He’s gone from All-Pro safety to cancer patient to cancer survivor. And now, he can add the title Comeback Player of the Year.
Berry, who played at Tennessee from 2007-09, won the ESPY for Comeback Player of the Year.
— ESPYS (@ESPYS) July 14, 2016
After winning the Jim Thorpe award in 2009, Berry went to multiple Pro Bowls with the Chiefs. But on Dec. 8, 2014, BErry was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Berry was cleared to play for the 2015 season and helped lead the Chiefs to the playoffs. Berry was also named the NFL’s Comeback Player of the Year, as well as a Pro Bowler.
Berry gave a speech following the acceptance of the award that included thanks to his parents.
“I want to thank my parents who are here sitting with me and are some true ride or dies who showed me the true meaning of unconditional love and showed me how important that is in this world,” Berry said.
Berry also thanked who two brothers, Evan and Elliot, who both play Tennessee. Eric’s father also played at Tennessee.
“Thankful for my brothers who pretty much went against hospital protocol and pretty much sat in with me on my treatments and almost got kicked out. But they bucked anyway and I’m proud of them, Berry said”
Berry also mentioned James Conner and Auburn’s Brodarious Hamm, who also battled and beat cancer recently. He instructed them, along with so many other cancer patients to keep fighting.
“There are so many people I could thank or honor but really I just want to to talk to the people who are out there fighting. There’s two words that stood out to me throughout the whole process and those were honor and legacy. YOu honor the ones who come before you and you leave a legacy for the people who come after.”
You can watch the whole acceptance speech here.