Few people in the football world have been more vocal about the needs of retired players than Mike Ditka. And Ditka says he likes what he’s heard about the way retired players’ needs will be met by the new Collective Bargaining Agreement that is expected to be voted on this week.
Ditka, the Hall of Fame tight end and former Bears and Saints head coach, told the Chicago Sun-Times that the reports that the new CBA will include $1 billion in benefits for retired players sounds great.
“If what they’re saying is reality, it’s terrific -— it’s what it should be,” Ditka said. “You should take care of the guys who helped make the game what it is. Maybe now I can get out of the business.”
However, Ditka also remains wary about how this money will be spent, who will be eligible and who will make the decisions about individual players who apply for assistance. When all of those details come out, we have a feeling that some of the retirees still won’t be happy with the benefits they’re receiving. Even if the new deal is clearly better for retired players than the old deal was.