Retired Players Not Taking Kindly To Threats From NFLPA Of Reduced Benefits

So should retired NFL players who have been shunned by the NFL Players Association for years be suspicious of the union’s sudden interest in making nice?
Yes, they should be.
And, per the Associated Press, they are.  Especially since the effort to make nice is also being supplemented by some good, old-fashioned strong-arming.
Some retired players are upset by recent comments from NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith that, if there’s a lockout in 2011, benefits for retired players will be cut by 80 percent.
The retired players claim that their benefits are protected by law, regardless of whether there’s a lockout.
In our view, Smith needs to tread lightly here.  Though the former trial lawyer has been able to mesmerize most of the friendly audiences he has encountered, Smith might be underestimating the acrimony that exists between the retired players and the union.  And the retired players won’t be taking kindly to an approach by Smith that seems to be blending kissing the retired players’ fannies in one breath, and trying to scare them in the next.

13 responses to “Retired Players Not Taking Kindly To Threats From NFLPA Of Reduced Benefits

  1. Ah, good old-fashioned scare tactics. My favorite is when school districts threaten to cut school bus service to try to get a school levy passed. Floods the polling booths with droves of parents terrified they might have to drive their little shitheads to school themselves. Hello, higher property taxes!

  2. There is probably an average of 60,000 fans at a game. there is about 15.5 games a week (bye weeks). There are 4 weeks of preseason and 17 weeks regular= 21 weeks x 60,000 x15.5x$1(increase i game ticket price for retired players fund)=19.53 million a year. it would help. I am not saying it would solve all the problems but an extra 20millionish/ year would help. I would be okay with paying $1 more per ticket per game

  3. It’s time to stop posturing and sit down at the freaking table and negotiate something – not in the media but with each other.
    tick tick tick….

  4. 80% cut! outrageous, pathetic, unfair, immoral & (as mentioned) possibly illegal. Thats a major gaunlet-slap-to-the-face of retired players who put their livlihoods(sp) on the line for a comparative pittance, while the NFLPA was barely making any ground for them over the course of 2 decades.
    How about the players who make an adjusted 20,000% (20k in ’77 becomes 4m in ’07) more than those who retired by, say, 1990 or so, in their respective careers, automatically have 5% of their money taken out and put into the retirement benefits fund?

  5. kayC says:
    May 31st, 2009 at 7:32 pm
    Ah, good old-fashioned scare tactics. My favorite is when school districts threaten to cut school bus service to try to get a school levy passed. Floods the polling booths with droves of parents terrified they might have to drive their little shitheads to school themselves. Hello, higher property taxes!

    Yup, happens here in CA every election cycle. It’s always threats to lay off teachers, 50 kids to a classroom, etc. No one ever talks about how many administrative staff at the district level or janitors are going to be cut. It’s always the teacher card.
    Or it’s public safety. “Vote for this or else you’ll die” is the gist of the advertising.
    Fortunately we saw through the BS this last time around and voted no on those stupid props.

  6. Why is the only solution to unionize?
    If it’s going to be illegal for the NFLPA to cut the benefits, a lawsuit will be enough. If it’s not, there’s not a lot they can do.. While it sucks, a lockout means the NFLPA will bring in no cash. Any reserves they have will have to go towards keeping the operation running.
    What the NFLPA should do, as a gesture of good faith, is have the executives forfeit their salaries during the lockout period so the retirees can continue to receive their benefits. With the money those guys are making, there’s absolutely no reason not to be saving as much as you can for when the times are lean.
    That goes for the retirees as well.

  7. spartachris,i like your approach about the executive salary solution,but really,do you think one of these union guys is going to do the right thing?every man for himself.

  8. @moonbeam-
    That’s why I called it a “gesture of good faith.” Of course I don’t see any of the NFLPA execs as being willing to forfeit any of their salaries. Sacrifices are great so long as someone else is making them, and rather than doing everything possible to help their own, they’d rather paint the owners as the ones being greedy and bitch that the owners are making too much money.
    It’s the epitome of a double standard- We’ll gripe that others need to do more, but don’t ask us to do the same because we won’t.

  9. this is pure BS from the Union all the current players should look real hard at this it will there pension on the line in the future
    These over paid babys need to wake up and learn that the former players are why they are getting the big pay days and they should kiss there asses every day
    If not for the former players no one would be getting the $$$$$$ that are being handed out like candy
    Respect the past or there is no future

  10. While I am lawsuit averse in a lot of trivial cases, I think the only leverage the retired players from the old days have is the threat of lawsuits for playing through debilitating injuries that put them at risk for major long term health problems. This would suck money out of the NFL clubs, which indirectly affects current payroll.
    Otherwise, what is the incentive for the current players union to make nice with retired players?
    The only question is some retired players like Webster have tried and failed. But with so many trivial lawsuits plaguing the country, I wonder why the NFL players have not had more of a case considering it was the unwritten rule to risk your health to play.

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