The Washington Commanders started their NFL regular season with a win, a familiar taste of success for the team. Since joining the league in 2019, star receiver McLaurin has been instrumental in three Week 1 victories over the course of five seasons.
However, there was something different about this first week of the season. It wasn't just about the Commanders' triumph on the field; it was about the renewed excitement surrounding the franchise and the unity it brought among the Washington football fans.
During an event held at FedEx Field on Tuesday to celebrate McLaurin's birthday, the star receiver expressed his appreciation for the fans' support and the shared bond among them. He specifically mentioned a remarkable moment during the National Anthem, where a saxophone player captivated everyone's hearts.
"When that saxophone player was playing his heart out during the National Anthem (Sunday) it was a really cool moment for us all to really witness the togetherness of this fan base," McLaurin said. "Just to see the reception that we got from the fans was unbelievable...it's probably the loudest I had heard the stadium since I've been here, which was really cool, and it wasn't all for not because we won the game and we want to try and keep that momentum going."
McLaurin is not just a force on the football field; he is also a catalyst for positive change off the field. Through his foundation, the Terry McLaurin Foundation, he partners with organizations like the Safeway Foundation to make a difference in the lives of children and families. Recently, McLaurin and the Safeway Foundation organized an event where children had the opportunity to dance, play, and interact with their beloved star player, capturing autographs and photos as cherished memories.
These initiatives reflect McLaurin's dedication to empowering the community, especially the younger generation of DMV citizens. "I try to reach as many people as I can," McLaurin said. "I think I really have a soft spot for kids. I think my foundation really drives to empower them in a multitude of ways. Like helping the teachers with their supplies this year, that directly impacts them but it also shows support to the teachers."
For McLaurin, being a better person is just as important as being an exceptional player. He attributes his values of giving back and making a positive impact to his parents. "That's truly where I got my foundation of what it is to give back to your community and to be of giving spirit," McLaurin said. "I'm a big believer in God and I know that we're all on this Earth to impact others and to impact them in a positive way...I know it's something I'm going to instill in my kids one day."
As thrilled as the fans were to witness the Commanders' victory in Week 1, McLaurin found equal joy in celebrating his 28th birthday with young fans and their families at FedEx Field. His genuine connection with the community has made him an adored figure locally and has garnered him a global fan base, solidifying his status as the most popular face of the franchise in recent years.
McLaurin's impact extends beyond the football field. His exceptional skills as a player and his unwavering commitment to making a difference in the community make him a true role model. As the Washington Commanders continue their journey, McLaurin will undoubtedly remain a driving force, both on and off the field.