Anthony Castonzo is not your average football player.
A self-described gamer - over the past several years, the offensive tackle has developed a keen interest in technology and he's invested time in the offseason learning as much as he can about it.
"I had been cultivating an interest in computer coding," he said. "I like to create things and I like math and I haven't used math in a long time and I missed it, honestly."
In 2017, he participated in an externship through the NFL Players Association. His first office job, he spent time at Whalerock Industries in California where he learned computer coding and designed his own video game, "Defend Your Kingdom."
"RPGs (role-playing games) are kind of math with graphics over them. I think that might be why I like it so much, because you have to figure out the strategy to beat the guy you're going against," he said. "It's all the choices that create your character and all the customizability."
As the official technology provider of the NFL, Microsoft recognizes the importance of celebrating the talents of players on and off the field - so they launched an award to honor players who use technology to create, advance, and inspire.
"Through our partnership with the NFL, we've worked closely with the League, coaches and players to provide Surface devices on the sidelines to help improve the performance and efficiency of the game, as well as the speed of instant replay," said Eli Friedman, GM of Integrated Marketing at Microsoft. "We've also witnessed the unique talents and creative and entrepreneurial endeavors that the players are pursuing off the field, where technology can play a critical role in helping them to achieve their goals."
The Colts nominated Anthony Castonzo as their representative for the inaugural "Anything But Ordinary" Player of the Year award. Fans are invited to vote for the winner, which will be announced during the NFL Honors awards show on Saturday, February 1st.
"Being able to recognize those players and their passions is a tremendous opportunity, especially if it inspires the next generation of creators and innovators to stand out from the crowd and pursue their own ideas," Friedman said.
To view the stories of the nominees for the "Anything But Ordinary" Player of the Year, go to: anythingbutordinaryaward.com. Fans can vote once per day through January 20th at 3 p.m. ET.
Through the voting sweepstakes, Microsoft will send one lucky fan and their guest to Miami to attend the NFL Honors awards show and Super Bowl LIV.