That's Saying Thumthing

Posted: October 22, 2010

Thumbs Up

To the NFL owners and players, who interrupted their stalemate over how to slice up their $9 billion-a-year revenue pie this week long enough to do something good for former players stricken with ALS. They agreed to expand benefits provided under the "88 Plan" to include reimbursement of expenses to qualifying players who are suffering from this horrible disease. The "88 Plan," named after Hall of Fame tight end John Mackey, was developed in 2006 to provide coverage to former players diagnosed with dementia. Eligible players with ALS will receive the same financial benefits - up to $88,000 per year for institutional care or up to $50,000 for home custodial care plus costs for certain physician services, medical equipment and medication. To date, the "88 Plan" has awarded $9.7 million toward the care of 132 former players.

Thumbs Down

To former Raiders quarterback JaMarcus Russell for one of the lamest mea culpas by an athlete in recent memory. In an interview with Josina Anderson on Showtime's "Inside the NFL," Russell, perhaps the biggest draft bust in NFL history, acknowledged that he made a lot of mistakes after being selected by the Raiders with the first overall pick in the 2007 draft, and that he's really sorry for those mistakes. But he, uh, isn't sure what those mistakes were. "I don't know where it went wrong," he said. "But for the things that did go wrong, I take full blame for whatever was my fault and the things that did happen." Now, that's some big-time accountability right there.

- Paul Domowitch

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