Between Ryan Braun’s suspension and Aaron Hernandez’s pending murder case, athletes don’t exactly have a sterling image these days.

Enter Jonathan “Tig” Willard.

The rookie free agent linebacker out of Clemson was driving on his way to Tennessee Titans training camp on Tuesday when he saved a family from a burning car.

Willard was cruising along I-40 in Tennessee when he first got sight of what was happening. “I saw this car in front of me, and it had all kinds of black smoke coming out of it," he said. "I tried to speed up and get up next to the car to let them know the car was on fire.”

Willard managed to grab the driver’s attention and coaxed her into pulling over:

When she pulled over, the car was really on fire at that point. The driver, she acted like she was in some kind of daze or something. She told me that she didn’t stop because she didn’t think it was her car that was on fire. Another guy stopped, and we managed to get the kids and the dog out and get them to safety, and then I finally got the woman out.”

The car totally engulfed in flames by that point and the driver kept thanking Willard for his heroism.

It’s unclear if anyone was hurt at all.

Willard signed a free agent deal with the Titans after this year’s draft. If there’s any karma in the world, he’ll make the team.

[TigerNet]