NFL player helps rescue family from burning car

2:47 PM, Jul 25, 2013   |    comments
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NASHVILLE, Tennessee (WSMV) -- Brave good Samaritans, including a rookie Tennessee Titans linebacker, jumped into action to save a woman, her children and the family's dog from a burning car Tuesday on Interstate 40.

Linebacker Jonathan "Tig" Willard saw the flames and heavy smoke coming from the car in front of him as he made his way toward Nashville for the start of training camp, but that's just the start of the story.

He and another man, Clint Dowty, didn't just stand by and wait for help, and what they did next is rightfully earning them a lot of praise.

"I'm proud of him," said Titans head coach Mike Munchak.

"It kind of topped everything that I have ever done," Willard said. "I just feel like I was in the right place at the right time, and I give all the glory to God. I just feel like I was there for a reason."

Dowty and Willard, who was signed as a free agent out of Clemson University this spring, each saw trouble with Cheri Hubbard's SUV.

Hubbard had her three kids and dog, Dutch, in tow when the vehicle started smoking.

Willard sped up and got Hubbard to pull over, then both men jumped into action.

"She opened the door and looked at me like, 'What's wrong?' And I said, 'Ma'am, your car is on fire,'" Dowty said.

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