Kamara’s fantasy output a real score for charity

  • Covered Saints for eight years at New Orleans Times-Picayune
  • Previously covered LSU football, San Francisco 49ers
  • Iowa native and University of Iowa graduate

METAIRIE, La. — The historic Christmas Day performance from New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara is a gift that keeps on giving.

Kamara’s NFL-record-tying six touchdowns came at the perfect time for fantasy football managers who were using him in their championship-week lineups. And many of those grateful fantasy managers, in turn, paid it forward with donations in Kamara’s honor to a charity he supports.

Son of a Saint, an organization that mentors boys who have lost their fathers because of death or incarceration, said it has received $21,000 so far from nearly 400 donors.

“We are especially grateful to Alvin for selecting Son of a Saint as his charity of choice,” said founder Bivian “Sonny” Lee III, son of the late Saints defensive back Bivian Lee. “As an organization, we turn 10 years old at the strike of midnight, so this makes the generosity even more meaningful as we kick off 2021.

“As we grow to 200 boys being enrolled, generous donations like these allow us to be more impactful and fulfill our mission. I want to thank Alvin Kamara and all who have donated so far!”

Kamara totaled 56.2 points in ESPN PPR (points per reception) leagues, the fourth most by any player in a game in the past 20 seasons. He said jokingly that he is well aware when fantasy managers are unhappy with his performance, so he enjoyed seeing this response.

“People, they’re strong about this fantasy football throughout the whole year. … I don’t want to even echo some of the stuff that they’ve messaged and tweeted, stuff like that. But it’s good to see people keep their word and they’re willing to donate,” Kamara said. “I don’t know how much you play fantasy football for; I’ve never played it. … But it’s going to a good organization. I’m just blessed to be able to help Son of a Saint at the same time.”

Kamara, who was named NFC Offensive Player of the Week for the first time in his career — among earning other honors — over this past week, said he didn’t spend much time dwelling on his performance.

“I was blessed to be able to do it in a city that I love with a team that I love. It’s cool,” he said. “But I’m being completely honest — I’m always just looking to what’s next, what more can I do. That’s what I’m looking for. … As a team, I think we’ve got so much more to accomplish.

“I don’t want to downplay it and make it seem like it wasn’t a great accomplishment, because it was. I was more happy about just sharing it with everybody, like Drew [Brees] excited and Sean [Payton] excited and all those guys excited.”

The Saints (11-4) clinched their fourth straight NFC South title with the 52-33 victory over the Minnesota Vikings in Week 16. They still have an outside chance at the NFC’s No. 1 seed if they win their finale at Carolina Panthers — but they would need both the Chicago Bears to beat the Green Bay Packers and the Seattle Seahawks to beat the San Francisco 49ers.

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