INDIANAPOLIS – Through 12 seasons, Reggie Wayne has caught 968 passes for 13,063 yards and 78 touchdowns, totals that put him among the NFL elite in every category.
Wayne has been a reliable target for both Peyton Manning and Andrew Luck as he has put together four seasons with at least 100 receptions and six with at least 1,200 reception yards.
His attention to detail and work ethic have paid off with six Pro Bowl nominations, and it has landed him another honor from the voting public.
Wayne was has been selected as the offensive captain for USA Football's 2012 All-Fundamentals Team through a national fan vote conducted from January 7-21.
The fourth annual USA Football All-Fundamentals Team, which honors 26 NFL players – 11 offense, 11 defense and four special teams – recognizes NFL players who exhibit exemplary football techniques for youth players to emulate. Playing fundamentally-sound football fosters better on-field performance and inherent safety benefits.
More than 10,000 fan votes were cast via www.facebook.com/usafootball to determine the team's three captains – one for each phase of the game. Joining Wayne as captains are Chicago cornerback Charles Tillman and Cleveland kicker Phil Dawson (special teams).
Wayne is recognized as one of the top route-runners in the league. He is adept at reading defenders and getting open despite coverages, plus his ability to secure the ball is a strength of his game.
Luck says there are reasons why Wayne is so valuable.
"His knack for showing up at big times (is key), said Luck. "Big moments, he controls (those). He's going to make the catch. On top of that, (is) the consistency – every day in practice, every play on the field. He's a lot of fun to play with."
Two defensive teammates cite Wayne for his work away from game days.
"The way he approaches the game is what makes him successful beyond the numbers," said Antoine Bethea. "If you come out to training camp and watch how he practices, you can see why he is the player that he is and how he produces on Sunday."
Says Robert Mathis, "He's the ultimate professional. He does all the little things right. The minor things he does that make you a good professional, they turn into major things on the field on Sunday. He works in practice, catches balls, simulates what happens in game so when it happens, his success is not by accident. All the plays he makes, his amazing catches and routes he runs, it's no accident."
Voted a captain, Wayne will receive an equipment grant valued at $3,000 from USA Football to donate to the youth or high school football programs of his choice. USA Football is the official youth football development partner of the Colts, the NFL and each of the league's other 31 teams.
"Football never stands still, yet strong fundamentals are timeless," said Carl Peterson, USA Football's chairman and longtime NFL executive who helped select the team. "Reggie has demonstrated extraordinary fundamentals throughout his career. We're proud to recognize him as an All-Fundamentals Team captain."
Employing core football fundamentals advances a youth player's performance and safety, particularly in the areas of blocking and tackling. USA Football has educated more than 100,000 youth football coaches in all 50 states and Washington, D.C., through its online courses and single-day coaching clinics. Approximately three million American children age 6-14 play organized tackle football, placing it among the country's most popular youth sports.