Updated Nov. 14, 2011 @ 10:14 p.m. ET
The NFL and the NFLPA agreed on how to distribute to retired players the $620 million "Legacy Fund," which was established in the new Collective Bargaining Agreement.
"Nothing the league can do can ever fully express our appreciation to the players who helped build our league," said commissioner Roger Goodell. "However, the Legacy Fund is a significant step, especially as the benefits apply to the older players."
In the new benefit, players will receive pension increases for their lifetime, not just the duration of the current CBA. And the benefits won't end with the player's death but will continue to be paid to the player's eligible beneficiary for the beneficiary's lifetime. Current benefit payments to retirees and their beneficiaries/former family members will be increased to no less than $600 per month. That floor on benefits will also apply to players who are not yet receiving pension payments, based on electing a life annuity or joint and survivor benefit.
The third point of the new benefit plan is the new Legacy Fund benefit credit, which will be added to players' current monthly pension checks.
The NFL provided the following two examples of how the Legacy Fund benefit will greatly increase monthly pension payments to many retired players:
There is a 10-year veteran player who retired in the 1960s who has been receiving a $200 monthly pension. The Legacy Fund benefit will increase his monthly check to $1,840.
Another 10-year veteran who retired in the 1970s will see his monthly check increase from $165 to $1,810.