Pro Bowler, free agent, and player advocate Eric Reid held a surprise live town hall Sunday afternoon speaking with wives of disabled retired NFL players.
Reid was joined by Geragos & Geragos attorney Ben Meiselas. Meiselas and Reid spoke with six wives of former NFL Players including Roxanne Gordon, Sandra Green, Shannon Cason, Monique Pass, Dilia Simmons, and Antoinette Kelly.
The town hall focused on promises made and broken to families of retired NFL players by the NFL and NFLPA. In heartfelt and empowering testimony, the women interviewed discussed how difficult it has been to navigate the disability system and how they have felt abandoned by the NFLPA. The women also shared outrage that the NFLPA took substantial disability payments away from their families in the new CBA that were previously agreed to and how the NFLPA calls this a “small concession.” The women also gave advice to the current wives of NFL players explaining why they should also care about changes in the CBA that harm disabled players since invariably confronting disability is a question of “when” and not “if” for current players.
Sources with knowledge of Sunday’s town hall tell us the idea of doing this came together because mainstream sports media has largely parroted talking points given to it by the NFL and NFLPA and have wholly ignored and failed to speak directly with those adversely impacted and harmed by the CBA. Speaking directly with the wives of retired players who now serve as their husband’s caretakers to hear their true stories while difficult, is important to getting the message out about the harm caused to players by the NFLPA sources tell us.
This is the second town hall style interview Eric Reid has held with Meiselas during the past week. Last week the two interviewed Hall of Famer and five time Super Bowl Champion Charles Haley who explained how he has had to beg for payment of medical care in order to avoid selling his home.
We hear Reid and Meiselas are planning more town hall style interviews in the coming weeks to take their message of helping families of disabled players directly to the people.