MarkFu is a big National Football League fan and has been a Green Bay Packer fan since he was a little Fu. I enjoy American football more than any other professional sport and I have no problem with the money that professional athletes earn during their careers, especially football players for the abuse their bodies take during, on average, a career that lasts less than 4 seasons with many players earning less than the $900,000 average NFL salary.
The dirty little secret in the NFL is how many of the great players and not so great players are forgotten once they leave the game due to retirement and career-ending injuries.
There is a grass-roots movement catching on, formed by Green Packer great, Jerry Kramer and backed by a number of big names in sports in and out of football, like Mike Ditka, Bob Costas, Charles Barkley and John McEnroe. HBO Sports has done a number of feature stories highlighting the plight of these former players. The organization is called “Gridiron Greats” and is raising awareness and money for those former players in dire need of help, post-football.
Every season, fans will ask each other, “Hey, I wonder what happened to so and so…Man, that guy was a good player!” The life after a pro football career for many is a living hell, but it is good to see an organization stepping up to do what the National Football League Players Association should be taking the lead on.