In June, Cincinnati Bengals defensive tackle Devon Still learned his four-year-old daughter, Leah, has stage four pediatric cancer. Still missed offseason workouts to be with her, shaved his head in solidarity, and filled his Instagram with pictures of Leah and updates on her treatment.
Even when he was getting ready for preseason action, Leah was in his prayers. In one August Instagram post, he wrote:
Normally today would be filled with excitement because it's my first game back since my injury in December but because it is also the day my daughter starts her 3rd round of chemo and I can't be there it feels different...usually on game day I pray for safety and a good game but today I'm just sending up one prayer so God knows how important it is to me and that is he stay by my daughters side and comfort her and protect her since I can't be there....I'm going to handle my business on the field today and she's going to handle hers in that hospital #PrayForLeah
Still learned on Saturday that the Bengals had cut him, leaving him unemployed and potentially without health insurance. In a piece on Good Morning America that aired today, Still admitted he understood why. He couldn't give football 100 percent.
But in a few days, everything changed. The Bengals signed Still to their practice squad, which means he'll receive health insurance and a weekly $6,300 salary. Plus, being on the practice squad means less time away from his family while still playing football.
"They could have washed their hands with me and said that they don't care about what I was going through off the field," Still said. "It's kinda like a blessing in disguise for me."
Leah started her fourth round of chemotherapy last week.