When San Francisco 49ers tight end George Kittle launched TEU in Nashville last year, he wanted to find a way to top the event in Year 2.
In addition to a who’s who of the NFL’s top tight ends getting in some on-field work over a three-day period at Vanderbilt, Kittle partnered this year with Bridgestone for the Driving Great Futures program, which has raised $20 million to provide transportation for The Boys & Girls Clubs of America and make accessing after school programs easier.
Kittle challenged all of the tight ends at this year’s TEU to a fundraising competition to benefit their local Boys & Girls Club with the top two TE’s earning an extra $50,000 for their club.
Buffalo Bills tight end and Brentwood Academy alum Dawson Knox currently leads the fundraising effort with $56,985 raised, followed by Tennessee Titans fourth-round pick Chig Okonkwo, who raised $39,263, benefiting The Boys & Girls Club of Middle Tennessee.
"It means a lot because I know the Boys and Girls Club here is pretty amazing," Knox said, via the Bills’ official website. "I know we have the best fans in the whole country. So, I know they're going to do a great job raising some money, and hopefully, we'll get a little bonus by the end of it."
Knox and Okonkwo are the only two tight ends who have hit five-figure donations as Bills TE O.J. Howard, who’s in third place, has raised $7,520. The two leaders have accounted for 70 percent of the $120,000 in donations raised in the TEU fundraising competition.
Final totals on dollars raised and the awarding of the extra $50,000 bonuses will be announced Thursday at 4:15 p.m. CST at the football practice complex at Vanderbilt.
Follow Michael Gallagher on Twitter @MGsports_