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NFL Remembers Its Legends

As good news of progress being made towards a new CBA keeps pouring in, it appears good-faith bargaining, if not just "good" common sense, has indeed reached the negotiating tables. It seems the NFL has not forgotten its own and both sides agreed to set aside funds for retired players. Of course, it's still a little unclear which retired players were looked after the most. PFT reports: 

According to multiple reports, the proposed new Collective Bargaining Agreement includes $1 billion in new benefits for retired players over the life of the 10-year deal. 

More than $600 million will be put into the "Legacy Fund" for retired players over the next 10 years.

While we should be very happy with these breaking developments, we will have to wait a while before we get to know what will really go to the retired players most deserving, if not desperate. If you go back even a couple of decades, the terrible 5-year post-retirement pension that the current players are trying to turn into a lifetime guarantee would seem incredible to some of the football players that built and developed the game of football and the NFL brand.

If you go far enough, some of the men in the Hall of Fame never had any benefits after retiring from football. And let's not forget, some of these Legends we remember as kids didn't have modern football, modern fields, modern weight rooms, modern helmets and equipment, training regiments, medical facilities, medical procedures, rehabilitation centers, home hyperbaric oxygen chambers, advanced preventative treatments, oh, and some new rules softening up the contact on the football field, to help them age a little bit more comfortably than the recent and future retirees. These men didn't have seven figure salaries set aside for retirement, much less for medical treatments uncovered by insurance companies due to their pre-existing conditions. The modern football players will age gracefully into their fifties and sixties, instead of dying from frontotemporal dementia before reaching the age of seventy - RIP John Mackey and many others.

So, we will have to wait a while before we know if $600 million is indeed going to be paid to the surviving Legends of the NFL. As reported, $600mm will be put into the "Legacy Fund" - which I assume is only for currently retired players, not those who will be retiring - but is still unclear if they will indeed place all of the $600mm into the fund in time to see considerable increase over the next ten years, or if $600mm could be in the fund over the next 10 years, with very little invested in the next few years, but with the idea that additional deposits over time and accrued returns are intended to equal $600 million in the fund.

But still, the good news is that the NFL owners and players have not forgotten the men that helped this struggle for billions take place, and are willing to help them get the medical care they deserve after a warrior career developing the game we now love on Sundays, and sometimes Monday, Saturday, and Thursday on primetime. Perhaps someone involved with the deal is in fact part of the BTB community, either that, or Pineywoods simply has some friends in high places. Author of some great fanposts and commenter of this...

I do think that more needs to be done about the veterans and the damage they have taken playing the game. I think both side should give up a couple of percent of their revenue to go into a fund as a start, with some well respected, business savvy vets (I nominate Roger Staubach) on a board to oversee it.

Well Piney, I again second the nomination of Staubach as one of the managers or custodians of the fund. We may not know how soon all $600 million will be invested in the fund, but I know a few noted players like Staubach must be involved in the ‘Legacy Fund' and not parties with no invested interest in the retired lives of the NFL Legends.

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