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(Reuters) - The NFL's effort to combat domestic violence and sexual assault will get a new look on Thursday night when a series of public service announcements featuring current and former players will begin airing during the San Diego-Denver game.
Nearly two dozen players will appear in the PSAs, including New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning and Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback William Gay, whose mother was killed by an abusive partner, said officials of the NO MORE Project.
Directed by actors Mariska Hargitay, Blair Underwood and Tate Donovan, the PSAs will air during all NFL games but premiere during Thursday's nationally televised game in Denver.
"I said yes to the NO MORE campaign because I lost my mother to domestic violence when I was younger, and I'm here to keep her voice alive and to help the movement of stopping domestic violence," said Gay.
The original NO MORE PSAs, featuring Hargitay, Amy Poehler, Andre Braugher and others, have aired more than 27,000 times nationwide since the campaign was launched last September, No More Project officials said, adding they had been shown during the past four weeks of NFL broadcasts.
The National Football League has been under fire over the past few months since several of its players, including stars Ray Rice and Adrian Peterson, were implicated in domestic abuse cases.
Reporting by Steve Ginsburg in Washington; Editing by Peter Cooney