HOUSTON - Houston Texans star JJ Watt opened up about a fundraiser he started for Hurricane Harvey victims, calling it a community effort.
"We're trying to raise as much as we can because we know that these recovery efforts are going to be massive," Watt told Good Morning America on Tuesday.
Watt has been steadily raising the goal of his fundraiser since it was started on Sunday. He originally started with a goal of $200,000, but the total has ballooned to more than $6 million by midday Wednesday with a new goal of $10 million.
Members of the NFL have stepped up to contribute to Watt's cause. Amy Adam Strunk, controlling owner of the Tennessee Titans, has contributed $1 million to the fundraiser. The goal has been raised to $4 million.
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"The beauty of it all is that it's not necessarily big donations that are coming in. It's $5 here, it's $10 there," he said. "It's people from all over the country giving whatever they can."
Watt also spoke about the Texans' immediate future. The team, who traveled to Dallas after playing in New Orleans on Saturday, are scheduled to play the Cowboys in a pre-season game on Thursday.
"If we are going to play this game, which I think is an 'if,' it should be a massive fundraiser," Watt said. "What's happening right now is so much bigger than football."
Football is not a priority right now, he said. What is a priority is the well-being of everyone in Houston. Watt said his girlfriend is thankfully OK but he's worried about others who are in dire situations.
"We all just care so much about everybody back there and we want them to stay safe," he said.
Watt pointed out that the relief efforts will not be completed overnight but will be going on for a long time. He said the fundraiser is evidence that the country will step up to help Texas.
"That's the beauty of the people in this country," he said, "is that when they see somebody going through a tough time, they all rally around."
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