League chides De Smith for claiming that NFL doesn’t fund player pensions

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The NFL and the NFLPA* still aren’t talking to each other.  But they’re still firing shots at each other.

Most recently, the league’s labor propaganda site posted an item based on a blog item from Jeff Nixon, a former player with ties to NFL Alumni, an organization for retired players that the NFLPA* views as being pro-owner in the labor dispute.

NFLLabor.com points out that Nixon points out that NFLPA* executive director DeMaurice Smith pointed out in an appearance with Mike Francesa of WFAN that the league doesn’t, and hasn’t, contributed to pension plans.

“Right now as we speak, how much money do the NFL teams provide to the former player pensions? The answer is zero,” Smith told Francesa.

“Teams pay nothing to former player pensions right now, and it’s been that way since 19 . . . it’s been that way since history,” Smith said.  “So I think it’s disgraceful that teams don’t pay anything to the former players who made this game great.”

NFLLabor.com points out that Nixon points out that Smith’s contention was incorrect.

Regardless, what does that prove?  It’s not as if Smith’s comments gained nightly-news traction or that the players scored any P.R. points.  The sniping only makes it harder to set the mood for getting a deal done.

44 responses to “League chides De Smith for claiming that NFL doesn’t fund player pensions

  1. Why should the NFL contribute to a players’ pension system? A pension only ends up in a financial mess, just ask the auto industry, or your local government. They’ll end up with too many liabilities and not enough assets.

    Players, past and present, should have to SAVE money towards retirement…open up a 401k like the rest of America’s work force.

    This is just another example of the greedy players trying to get something for nothing.

  2. According to De Smith the NFL should just keep paying everyone that was involved with the sport…well at least if they played.

    This is pretty much what is wrong with America. Everyone feels entitled.

  3. The trend of standing behind the players in your articles, however much or little per article, sticks out.
    The impression that this site has a bias towards the players is certainly easy to walk away with.

  4. I just want to point out that they are arguing over who funds something that most people in the United States don’t get.

  5. What does it prove? That Smith is a liar, or woefully uniformed on what should be an important matter to the union he represents.

    Asking what that proves once again shows a player bias on this site. Give us a break. If Goodell had made a similar misstatement, you’d be all over it. I guess this is like Fox’s “fair and balanced”.

  6. He said that she said that they knew someone who knows someone that heard them say they didn’t do it.

    Didn’t do what you say?

    Let me go find out, hey can you ask him, to ask her if they know who it was that you heard they said what someone from over there said about you know what? I can’t remember so just never mind

  7. If there was ever an emergency on a plane with DeMaurice Smith was on it and everyone had to parachute off it. He probably be the one to grab a backpack instead of the parachute. I swear the guy looks like the black version of Curly from the Three Stooges. So, I guess that makes Kessler Moe and Mawae Larry. Frickin morons, shut up and go away NFLPA!!!!!!!

  8. like i said before, you cant say anything that will get me on the players side.

    the owners are the owners. i trust them with the league. i dont trust the players. just like i trust the coaches to run the team, not the players to run the team. when i was 16 i would have wanted the players to run the world. you give the players more and more and you wind up with the nba. the nba players think they own the league, they think they are untouchable.

    i watch my team play. u can get rid of every player and i am fine with that. i would keep my coach and organazation over any player.

  9. I have a suspicion that the reason D Smith is so vague when he talks about the details of the various proposals is that he doesn’t KNOW the details. He’s all into “respect” and “disrespect” and hyperbole and BILLABLE HOURS. Pash always is so much better prepared than Smith.

  10. It really doesn’t seem to me that the NFLPA knows what it wants, other than financial disclosure and 50% of the money. It’s hard for me to believe but i am starting to think I agree with the owners. Who opens their books for their employees, no company that i know of.

  11. Let me see if I understand this. After an employee has long since left the company, the company should be required to still be providing for that former employees pension?

    Hmmm, I have had a dozen or so employers over the last 25 years of employment….so each one of them should be contributing to my retirement to this day.

    Get Real!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  12. De Smith sure does lie a lot. Bree’s asked if we would trust the Owners, well I must ask him, does he really trust De Smith??? Seriously???

    Also, the latest proposal by the NFL did include money for retired players but the current players don’t care about the retired players (even if they say the do their actions are speaking louder). Apparently the current players are unwilling to take any cut in their money to provide it to the retired players. I think both the current players and the teams should be giving up some of their profit for these former players. Without the former players the league would NOT be what it is today. Without today’s players, well the league would be much better!!!

    mrf47, just so you know, in unionized work, pension is generally provided by the employer/union. Ask any retired Ford employee.

    This stuff really is getting quite lame though. I can handle a little bit more of this, but after too much longer they may just alienate me enough to move on…

  13. Can DeMaurice Smith really be this stupid? The guy comes off as being completely out of touch with reality, he rarely says anything that is true.

    The NFLPA* should fire him today and get somebody in there that truly has the players interested in mind. I think this guy just likes to see his face on TV and hear his voice on the radio

  14. You want pensions and bloated salaries too? Wake up and join the real world whining crybabies.

  15. “So I think it’s disgraceful that teams don’t pay anything to the former players who made this game great.”

    That’s because they’re getting paid to play a GAME. It’s not a REAL JOB. After you’re done playing a game, go get a real job, if you prepared yourself for it.

  16. So the NFL’s website is propaganda however the NFLPA’s website is OK? How about some fair reporting on this for once?

  17. PFT loves them some players. every article is written exactly how i would write it if i wanted to make the players look good but i didnt want anyone to realize it. the problem is that is very difficult to do

  18. What this post continues to prove is that De “Dig It” is uninformed. It also continues to prove that this is ProUnionTalk.com, not ProFootballTalk.com.

  19. Not only is D. Smith rolling out false propaganda, he himself has been the target of pointed criticism from the NFL Alumni Association for screening them out and was the recipient of a letter from Congress suggesting he meet with George Martin, the Exec. Director. He’s playing with fire. The fans care about the vets and D. Smith won’t get away with this in the end.

  20. wait…so Fl0ri0, are you saying that the issue is not that De Smith is a blatant liar, it is that he was called out on it??? Pretty clear to see which site is the NFLPA propaganda site.

  21. duh is a liar, and since they decertified, has no place anywhere near any of this.

    decert, however, was a sham.

  22. One thing I wonder is whether the NFL Alumni Association can bring legal action against the NFLPA for decertifying by claiming it is a sham that prevents the collective bargaining regarding the League proposal to give millions to the Alumni? The League agreed not to use the “sham” tactic but the Alumni could.

  23. The fact that a guy as dumb as DeSmith is the head of the NFL players union tells us all just how unintelligent and disconnected from reality that the majority of the players actually are.

    For every smart player with a clue (Chris Cooley, Heath Evans, ect) there are probably 3-4 players without any concept of just how much money they making, how lucky they are to be able to play in the NFL, or the struggles and stress that the rest of us in the world are facing.

    These guys are mostly clueless, and the fact that they elected a guy as clueless as them to represent them (DeSmith) speaks volumes. It’s no wonder that many of these players are broke 5 years after football after making tens of millions. It also explains why the union members are so easily manipulated by a few lawyers and a handful of guys making a killing by leading them along a path that isn’t necessarily in their best interest.

  24. You would think that a lie on either side would be worthy of correction. So, just for clarification purposes…why didn’t you provide us with the information that shows just how big a lie the zero pension accusation was? Maybe Drama Queen was just off by a few 1’s and 0’s.

  25. So your telling me these players getting paid millions isn’t enough, now they need a pension plan. How about being responsible with your money.

  26. Do ignorant fans really put the blame on the players? How much say honestly do you think each player has. The NFLPA or the organization formerly known as the NFLPA has a president and a few selected high profile players that honestly don’t represent the real football player who was not a high draft pick and has worked his butt off to get to the NFL and has to work his butt off to stay there. How much say do these players in the executive commitee realy have? They are there to make the players believe they have a say. D Smith is running the show. Do you think the NFL goes to every player and ask them do you think this deal is fair? No, most players are in the dark just like the fans, waiting for people that are suppose to be representing them to make the right choice. They have no say just like the fans only the players have way more to lose. Every player in the NFL is not Adrian Peterson. Perspective is a mother.

  27. how much money can a 7th rounder special teams players save towards retirement when the average career lenght is 4 years. How much could you put away for retirement in 4 years. People act nlf players are playing a game. Monopoly is a game. you show me a game where you can lose the use of your legs on any sunday.

  28. last time i checked we watch the nfl for the players not the owners. If the owners are upset that players make too much, who are the ones that decided to sign them. sounds to me like there are a large numbers of haters out there who think players are greedy. those of you that think players dont work hard you are sadly mistaken, they work as hard at their job as anyone. how many of you have been screwed by an employer, the players are no different.

  29. So how is the UNION taking care of their former members ? They could easily take a small fraction of the huge “cut” they get and take care of those guys…. but they would rather keep the money for themselves.

  30. @thefactor51: The average player does have a say…they just made a poor choice (collectively) and elected a guy that does not have their collective interests at heart. I honestly don’t think we would be where we are right now if Vincent got the job.

  31. Smith is right once again… Any player who’s played for at least 4 seasons should have their medical expenses paid FOR LIFE… It wouldn’t even make a dent in the the revenue.

  32. 53 players + 8 Practice Squad players = 1,952 players. Each paying $15,000 per year in union dues = approximately 29 million per year.

    Disclaimer: Player numbers are based on common sense reasoning. I don’t know if everyone that goes to camp has to pay dues, and if they get cut, are they entitled to a refund? Do practice squad guys pay full dues? Dunno, but the point remains the same…… that’s a boatload of money, to pay for administration of a union, that does not appear to do anything, except liutigate.

    In what way, do they benefit from this amount of money? What happened to workers unions, that actually took care of it’s members?

    Even if the players consider the union leadership overinflated salaries to be acceptable, there should be enough left over, to take care of their own!!

    Imagine if unions were required to fund retirement plans instead of the company or the govt? Wouldn’t consumer products be cheaper and the Govt. out of debt? Ahhhhh, if they only took care of their own? We could only dream!!

    …and Mike, I know you (along with most of the media) are hanging on the players side, because you have a higher percentage of labor on your shows, than management….. but it’s not even subtle anymore.

    ……Roger G came out with ommitted truths, and you made it out to be “very disrespectful” and “insulting to the players” Almost to the point, where you wanted him before a firing squad, without a last cigarette.

    ……so De does even worse than omitted truth, with an outright lie, and it’s no big deal and the owners should “get over it” and get back to negotiating?

    Gotta admit, your bias never ceases to make me chuckle!!

  33. @finfan you are wrong. Only one representative from each team had the right to vote and the list of available candidates was decided only by a select group on the NFLPA executive committee. So when did each player have his say? And by the way Troy Vincent is a sellout that immediately joined the NFL after he lost the right to be president of the union.

  34. If DeSmith really cared about former players (and remember it was the NFLPA and not the NFL that screwed former players out of video game revenue) then he would have signed the last offer by the owners, or made a meaningful counter proposal. That deal offered to take care of players after they retired and help take care of players long since retired. But the current players are still too greedy.

  35. how much money can a 7th rounder special teams players save towards retirement when the average career lenght is 4 years??

    What’s the league minimum? $300k plus?
    Times 4 years = $1.2 million less 10% to the agent, union dues and Uncle Sam the player should net $700k plus. Live for 4 years at 75k per year and you have over $400k in the bank. Not too shabby to have saved that kind of coin in 4 years and be a 28 year old looking for a job. (hopefully with a college degree that was free also)

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