Sun coverage: NFL retired players

Sun coverage of NFL retired players and the dispute over the league's disability benefits system.

December 12, 2007

Union Memorial to help with NFL retirees' care

Union Memorial Hospital threw open its doors yesterday to retired NFL players in need of replacement hip or knee surgery, then sat back to wait for the rush.

October 13, 2007

Pro Football

Benefits for ex-players to be reviewed

A congressional committee says it has "serious questions" about the disability benefits system for NFL players and is asking the Congressional Research Service to conduct a study so lawmakers can determine whether a legislative remedy is needed.

September 27, 2007

NFLPA set to rebut claims

NFL Players Association chief Gene Upshaw says that some retired players' accounts of being rejected for disability benefits are rife with inaccuracies and that the union will begin a new effort today to defend itself.

September 21, 2007

Rick Maese: Ex-players making gains on benefits

Earlier this week, Brent Boyd walked into Room 253 of the Russell Senate Office Building, noticed the sharp wood paneling and the three low-hanging chandeliers. The first thing he thought was, "This is the most opulent room I've been in." The second was, "What the hell am I doing in here?"

September 19, 2007

Ditka song hails ex-players

Football fans don't think of red-faced, gravel-voiced Mike Ditka as a musician. But the former Chicago Bears coach said yesterday that he helped write a country song - he also does a voiceover - about aging NFL heroes tentatively called "Love of the Game."

September 19, 2007

Upshaw asking Congress for help

NFL Players Association chief Gene Upshaw asked Congress yesterday for assistance in improving a disability benefits system that retired players say repeatedly let them down when they were poor and ailing from old football injuries.

September 18, 2007

NFL feud goes to Congress

The son of late Pittsburgh Steelers center Mike Webster says he'll tell a Senate committee today that he fears other retired players will die as destitute as his father did unless the NFL and its players union boost assistance to needy players.

August 7, 2007

Weighing in on concussions

Todd Heap remembers catching a pass in the end zone ... and then darkness.

August 2, 2007

No apologies from Upshaw

NFL Players Association chief Gene Upshaw offered no apologies yesterday for his combative comments about retired players who have criticized him. But, in a rare interview on the subject, Upshaw said he was committed to resolving some of their issues with the league's disability benefits system.

July 27, 2007

NFL, union unveil plan for needy retirees

For the third time in the past 13 months, the NFL and the NFL Players Association this week announced new initiatives designed to relieve financial strain on needy retired players.

June 27, 2007

Ex-NFL players address Congress

It was a day of tears -- but also relief - for retired NFL players who hope their accounts of debilitating football injuries will move Congress to demand reform of a "broken" disability benefits system.

June 26, 2007

Unitas fights on in place of legend

Sandra Unitas remembers how her husband, John, late in life could barely sign autographs with his once-powerful right hand, much as he tried.She used to find rubber bands strapped to pens he had jury-rigged so he could scrawl his name with a limb -- "The Golden Arm," it was once called - that was of little use because of a tendon injury the Baltimore Colts legend said dated to a 1968 preseason game.

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