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NFL Gratitude to Greats Project (w/ John Vairin)
Episode 16922nd September 2021 • The Football History Dude • Sports History Network
00:00:00 00:29:33

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John Vairin was diagnosed with a rare occurrence of oral squamous cell cancer. He had surgery on May 17, 2019, and then he decided he wanted to celebrate the NFL's 100th season. The result was a project he named "NFL Gratitude to Greats," honoring and thanking NFL legends.

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John Vairin, NFL fan of 26 years who is sharing his story with retired NFL players and extending his goodwill by donating to NFL-related charities. John was inspired to do this when he beat an unusual occurrence of squamous cell cancer in 2019, just shortly before the NFL began to celebrate its 100th anniversary, despite never smoking, drinking, or dipping. 

He started the Gratitude to Greats projects in 2019, with a new one being started every year, where he shares his story with Pro Football Hall of Famers and legends, as well as extends his generosity by donating to NFL player-related charities. You can find him on Twitter at @nflgrattogreats, Instagram at nflgratitudetogreats, and you can find the blog where he posted all of his responses in the inaugural Gratitude to Greats project from 2019 at


The Football History Dude is a show dedicated to teaching NFL fans about the rich history of the game we all know and love. I’m your host, Arnie Chapman, and I’m just a regular dude that loves football and is a nerd when it comes to learning about history. I created this show to share the gridiron knowledge nuggets I gain from researching various topics about the history of the National Football League. Each episode I welcome you to climb aboard my DeLorean to travel back in time to explore the yesteryear of the gridiron, and yes, that’s a reference to the Back to the Future Movies.