Nat Geo & NFL Linebacker Henderson Team Up for 'Sacks for Big Cats'

Related: National Geographic

Nat Geo & NFL Linebacker Henderson Team Up for 'Sacks for Big Cats'

As fans and players polish their cleats, helmets and tailgates for a new NFL season, Nat Geo WILD, National Geographic's Big Cats Initiative (BCI) and Minnesota Vikings linebacker Erin Henderson are proud to announce the second-season renewal of their "Sacks for Big Cats" campaign with a new public service announcement (PSA). Henderson, a five-year NFL linebacker and two-time "Sacks for Big Cats" captain, will once again provide a big rush for big cats by personally donating $1,000 to BCI every time he makes a sack in the 2013 football season - and challenging others in the NFL to join him!



"Sacks for Big Cats" will provide monetary support for BCI, which aims to halt the rapid decline of big cats in the wild, whose populations have been plummeting for years in The Face of human encroachment and environmental degradation. (For more information, visit www.CauseAnUproar.org and follow us on Twitter at @CauseanUproar.)



To mark Henderson's dedication to the cause, Nat Geo WILD released a new PSA today - titled "Game of Inches" - featuring Henderson (http://files.natgeonetworks.com/_uu3fKO9RujLGxR).



"It's a game of inches, and every one of them counts," said Henderson. "We're on fourth down here and if we don't make a play soon, the clock will run out on big cats everywhere. It's time to cause an uproar."



"To have Erin join the fight to save big cats is a huge step in the right direction," said Geoff Daniels, executive Vice president and general manager of Nat Geo WILD. "In order to make a difference, we need to spread the word. We're excited to have Erin on board for one of our biggest causes and wish him luck on the field as he sacks for big cats!"



BCI is a long-term effort to halt the decline of these iconic animals in the wild through assessment efforts, on-the-ground conservation projects, education and a global public-awareness campaign. "Cause an Uproar," launched by the National Geographic Society and Nat Geo WILD, is the global outreach and awareness campaign that rallies the public around the conservation of these majestic cats.



Now, more than ever, is the time to "Cause an Uproar" for big cats. In the past 50 years, Africa's lion population has declined by more than 90 percent. There are now more tigers living in captivity than in the wild. Cheetahs have Disappeared from more than 75 percent of their range in Africa. These top predators are quickly disappearing - victims of conflict with humans and habitat loss. Because big cats are keystone species in their ecosystems, the loss of these majestic animals also means that the natural balance of entire environments is destroyed. "Game of Inches" is part of Nat Geo WILD's effort to raise awareness about these cats' plight.



Nat Geo WILD will also team-up with NFL stars Chris Johnson, of the Tennessee Titans, and Devin Hester, of the Chicago Bears, to kick-off Big Cat Week this November with the world premiere of Man vs. Cheetah. Johnson (the NFL's fastest running back) and Hester (the super-agile wide receiver and kick returner) will take part in an extraordinary challenge against a cheetah as they go "toe-to-paw" to explore the advantages and vulnerabilities of human and cheetah anatomy. It's superstars vs. super predator! Who will win?



National Geographic looks forward to collaborating with these NFL stars and invites you to join the "Sacks for Big Cats" campaign by cheering Erin Henderson on to a record-breaking season where sore quarterbacks will mean more roaring big cats.



NAT GEO WILD



For more than 30 years, National Geographic has been the leader in wildlife programming. The networks Nat Geo WILD and Nat Geo WILD HD, launched in 2010, offer intimate encounters with nature's ferocious fighters and gentle creatures of land, sea and air that draw upon the cutting-edge work of the many explorers, filmmakers and scientists of the National Geographic Society. Part of the National Geographic Channels US, based in Washington, D.C., the networks are a joint venture between National Geographic and FOX Cable Networks. In 2001, National Geographic Channel (NGC) debuted, and 10 years later, Spanish-language network Nat Geo Mundo was unveiled. The Channels have carriage with all of the nation's major cable, telco and satellite television providers, with Nat Geo WILD currently available in 54 million U.S. homes. Globally, Nat Geo WILD is available in more than 96 million homes in 90 countries and 28 languages. For more information, visit www.natgeowild.com.



National Geographic Big Cats Initiative



The National Geographic Society is one of the world's largest nonprofit scientific and educational organizations. Founded in 1888 to "increase and diffuse geographic knowledge," the Society's mission is to inspire people to care about the planet. It reaches more than 400 million people worldwide each month through its official journal, National Geographic, and other magazines; National Geographic Channel; television documentaries; music; radio; films; books; DVDs; maps; exhibitions; live events; school publishing programs; interactive media; and merchandise. National Geographic has funded more than 10,000 scientific research, conservation and exploration projects and supports an education program promoting geographic literacy. The Big Cats Initiative (BCI) is a long-term effort to halt the decline of big cats in the wild. BCI supports efforts to save big cats through assessment efforts, on-the-ground conservation projects, education, economic incentive programs and a global public-awareness campaign. Visit www.causeanuproar.org.



Minnesota Vikings



The Minnesota Vikings were established in 1961 and are one of 32 teams in the National Football League. The name Vikings was selected because it represented both an aggressive person with the will to win and the Nordic tradition of the northern Midwest (the last sentence is from page 225 in the team guide). The Vikings have played in four Super Bowls.




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