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We Are a Reflection of Your Success


Jan. 1, 1970

Dear Fellow Former Players & Friends,

This month I want to take some time to express how excited I am for you and what you do next in life. How well you adjust during life’s transitions directly impacts you and your family. It impacts your family’s future and how you measure success and happiness. The Professional Athletes Foundation (PAF) for decades has been providing support for Former NFL Players as they leave the game and face difficult life situations.  And make no mistake about it, we are only a reflection of your success. We may provide assistance, but it is really your actions that create great and exciting opportunities.

The PAF is the NFLPA’s foundation, and has been operating for 28 years. The NFLPA provides financial assistance to former players through the Professional Athletes Foundation.

Our housing relief efforts have kept thousands of players and their families in their homes.

We provide support for former player funerals, burials and support for the widows of former players during this most difficult life transition.

We are also responsible for executing more than 5000 cardiovascular screenings for former players as well as substance abuse treatment, physical therapy, emotional therapy, hearing tests and sleep evaluations.

Did you know the PAF was the first to create an open environment for players to share their difficult life stories and then heal together by talking honestly about their shared common experiences?

In 2017 the PAF assisted 488 former players through many difficult situations. 1.76 million dollars was awarded in financial assistance. 45% of those payments went toward mortgage and rent assistance.  215 players received emergency assistance during Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma.

But it’s not about how much money is spent or how many players are helped. It’s the effect and impact these grants have in keeping families together and giving players and their families hope that they can find stability after a tough period.

I always say, you’re in your own race. Strive to get better. Find your voice. Playing pro football is a tremendous accomplishment. Claim it!

Continue to show the world the best version of you, let what you learned in football provide comfort that you are smart and a resilient learner.

Andre Collins

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Executive Director
Professional Athletes Foundation
NFL Player 1990-1999

Gene Upshaw Player Assistance Trust Fund

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