NFL Team Re-signs Player to Help Him Support Daughter With Cancer

September 7, 2014  |  

It’s quite possibly every parents worse nightmare: You’re handling the day-to-day, difficult task of raising a child when you find out your child is terribly ill. That’s exactly what happened to Cincinnati Bengals defensive tackle Devon Still.

The 25-year-old NFL player Devon Still  father of four-year-old daughter, Leah, who was diagnosed with neuroblastoma—a cancer, most commonly found in infants and young children, which develops from immature nerve cells.

Back in June, the baller took to his Instagram page to share the devastating news with his friends and fans posting the above image with the following message:

I debated with myself whether I was going to post anything on social media but I felt it would be beneficial for my family..last night I found out my daughter has cancer…I decided to let ppl know not for sympathy because I’ve come to the point where I no longer feeling sorrow but to ask that y’all keep my daughter in your prayers the more prayers that go up the more faith we have that she will overcome this obstacle…if y’all know me y’all know this girl is my world I know that she is strong and she won’t let anything hold her down without a fight..thanks everyone for the continued support of my family.

And while a lot of parents aren’t able to empathize Still, prayers and encouraging messages began pouring in. Since his initial post, the athlete has been extremely transparent about the struggle he and his fiancé endure as they support their daughter through her battle and recovery. Leah recently started her fourth round of chemotheraphy.

As if the NFL players story wasn’t touching enough, fans watched as Still endured another obstacle in the public limelight—he was cut from the Cincinnati Bengals.

But before he had enough time to fully cope with no longer having a job, in an effort to support him during his most difficult situation, his team called him up, extending an offer to sign to the professional football team’s practice squad.

“They could have washed their hands with me and said they didn’t care about what I was going through off the field,” Still told ABC News. He continued, “It’s like a blessing in disguise.”

And a blessing it is. With his newest deal Still will receive medical insurance and a weekly salary of $6,300. And without the added commitment of having to attend every game, the doting father travels less, allowing him time to attend his daughter’s doctor’s appointments.

This was something Still struggled with when first learning of Leah’s diagnosis, as his dedication to the team began to falter when his family began dealing with her medical condition—understandably so.

“I completely understand where the Bengals were coming from when they cut me because I couldn’t give football 100 percent right now.”

But for now Still and his family can breathe a slight sigh of relief when it comes to the daunting expenses of medical bills, and are able to fully focus on their little darling as she battles stage 4 cancer—a battle her dad says she’s fully capable of fighting.

“She’s willing to put up a fight to beat it,” says her loving father.

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