NFL to Pay $42M For Using Retired Players’ Images

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The Common Good fund will be administered by a group of retired players approved by the court. And the licensing agency will for the first time market retired players’ publicity rights in conjunction with the NFL, thereby making it easier for retired players to work with potential sponsors and advertisers.

The other players listed in the suit are Jim Marshall, Ed White, Joe Senser, Fred Dryer and Dan Pastorini. In the past, if Marshall was approached by a company looking to pay him to use footage of him as a player in a commercial or advertisement, the company would have to go to the NFL for approval, to the Minnesota Vikings for more approval and to any player featured in that footage for more approval.

The new licensing agency, which will be overseen by a board of retired players, will streamline that process.

“This creates essentially a one-stop shopping for whoever wants to tap into this marketplace,” said Dan Gustafson, an attorney for the retired players. “The agency will have the ability to make that deal on behalf. And it’s up to board of directors of players to determine how to do that.”

The settlement only covers those players who are currently retired, but Gustafson said players who do retire in the future will have the chance to utilize the newly formed licensing agency.

The NFL will also pay another $8 million in assorted costs associated with the settlement, including money needed to help set up the trust and pay attorneys.

The settlement needs court approval and a preliminary approval hearing was scheduled for Friday. Retired players will have the chance to review the settlement and discuss it at several hearings throughout the summer. Final approval is scheduled for Aug. 29.

(Photo: AP)

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