A well-respected, two-time Pro-bowler, and 2005 Super-Bowl Contender who suffered a
high ankle sprain, a herniated disk to the neck, and a torn ACL, this outstanding blue-collar veteran, Leonard Weaver, bull-dozed his way to rank as the highest paid fullback in NFL history and proved that he was just as gifted off the field as he was on the field.
Born to Jennifer Gilmore and Leonard T. Weaver Jr., Weaver attended Satellite High School in Satellite Beach, Florida and was a student and a letterman in football, basketball, and track. Historically, Leonard “The Dream” Weaver began his college football career in 2001 at Carson-Newman College as a linebacker, but quickly elevated to tight end, in 2003 hauled in 16 receptions for 410 yards and six TDs. In the Division II Playoffs that year, he made a 67-yard touchdown reception. In his final year, still a tight end, Weaver earned Division II All-American honors from the AP, American Football Coaches Association and others. He led the 9-3 Carson-Newman Eagles to a conference championship and the second round of the Division II playoffs with 27 catches for 571 yards and 8 touchdowns, leading all Eagles receivers. Weaver battled depression in college, having suffered a personal tragedy, however, his faith in God and determination to succeed where others had failed carried him through this most difficult time.
This 2005 undrafted free agent signed with the Seattle Seahawks, was selected to the 2009 First Team All Pro and
the 2010 Pro Bowl as a starting fullback and simultaneously founded the “Leonard Weaver Family Foundation.”
Through this philanthropic organization he created “Weavers Workerz”, a mentorship program that focused on
character development and academic achievement among urban African American youth. Weaver’s foundation
also empowered local citizens through family days, giveaways, and community support with free tutoring,
homework help and health screenings while working in conjunction with the American Diabetes
Association. The Leonard Weaver Foundation became a pivotal force in inner city youth’s
positive development not only in Philadelphia but neighboring communities.
A true man of faith and “stick-to-it-tiveness”, Weaver was ordained in 2007 in the Seattle
International Church by Bishop Raymond Hampton. He ministered alongside the
legendary “Evangelist to the Stars”, Tim Storey. He has supported revivals
in the Dominican Republic with Mike Silva Ministries. He worked closely
with the ministry of the Bethel AME Church in Knoxville, TN. He has served
in several affiliate churches where his grandfather, Bishop Leonard T. Weaver Sr.,
one of the modern day pillars of the largest black Pentecostal churches in the
world, the Church of God in Christ, was formerly pastor.
The true test of faith, real talent and tenacity was evident when Weaver was
injured on his first carry of the 2010 season, on September 12, 2010 against
the Green Bay Packers that subsequently led to his being carried off the field.
His injury was later revealed to be “a very severe” torn ACL in his left knee,
requiring season-ending surgery. He was placed on injured reserve on
September 13, 2010 but released on July 28, 2011.
In retrospect, not only did this father of three “float like a butterfly and sting
like a bee” on the field, but his aerodynamic defiance manifested in his
refusal to surrender to a “first-of-its-kind in the NFL” injury that threatened
to turn “The Dream” into a nightmare. Through the unending barrage of
support that streamed through his faith, physicians, family, friends and
fans, Weaver proved once again that the dream was still alive!