Top stories in this week's FPN
Shawn Achor: The happy secret to better work
We believe that we should work to be happy, but could that be backwards? In this fast-moving and entertaining talk from TEDxBloomington, psychologist Shawn Achor argues that actually happiness inspires productivity.

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Former player Joe Jurevicius, an avid outdoorsman, with United Union of Roofers, Waterproofers and Allied Workers International President Kinsey Robinson and the United Sportsmen's Alliance for it's SHOT event
Former NFLers finding second life in pro football ... at Senior Bowl
Program with NFLPA helping retired players learn skills, make gains in field of scouting
By Mike Garafolo
Jan 28, 2016 at 12:56a ET
On the field at Fairhope Stadium, on the Eastern Shore of Mobile Bay, the NFL hopefuls were grinding their way through intermittent rain during the first practice of Senior Bowl week on Wednesday.
On the sideline, amongst the coaches, scouts and personnel evaluators, another group of men was doing its own form of hard work, hoping this event would spark these men’s NFL careers -- albeit in a role that won't require pads or much physical exertion.
Thirty-one wide-eyed invitees of The Scouting Academy, a recently formed program designed to train those who want to be NFL scouts, participated in a three-day "live classroom" event at the Senior Bowl that gave them first-hand experience of what the scouting process entails -- from the practice evaluations, to the film study, to the interviews of the players.
Among those present were 18 guys who already knew a bit about the scouting process because they'd partaken before -- as players. As part of a partnership between The Scouting Academy and The Trust, an organization powered by the NFL Players Association that provides services for players including career transitioning, these men were on hand to see if they'd like to go from being the evaluated to the evaluators.
It's an avenue players of the past didn't have, and it's one Charlie Peprah appreciates. A 2006 fifth-round pick of the New York Giants who played seven seasons with the Green Bay Packers, Atlanta Falcons and Dallas Cowboys, Peprah knew that after his playing days were done he would want to remain involved with football somehow, though the hours and instability of the coaching profession didn't appeal to him.
But scouting? Yeah, that intrigued him.
"When I decided to retire in 2014, (Oakland Raiders GM and former Packers personnel man) Reggie McKenzie brought me in for a week internship in 2014, to see if it's something I wanted to do. I really liked it," Peprah said. "He did it as a favor to help me feel it out. I did another internship with the Packers in training camp. I was putting in 12-, 13-hour days but it didn't seem like work at all.
"That's when I knew this is something I wanted to do. It was fun and I was staying involved in the game."
With many players struggling to find direction once their playing days are over, Peprah's eagerness to find another way to remain involved with football, combined with the avenues to get it done, is precisely what the league and union have wanted to capitalize on for years.
But while the players know the game, there's more to making the jump into personnel evaluation than walking from the locker room into team's offices. That's why Dan Hatman founded the Scouting Academy two years ago after serving as a scout for the Eagles, Jets and Giants. He realized the need for a service to teach players about the organizational skills involved with preparing reports and the like while opening his doors to football hopefuls who needed a better understanding of the game.
Former Bears general manager Jerry Angelo has served as an instructor. One-time Rams head coach and offensive coordinator Mike Martz is an active instructor. Broncos defensive coordinator Wade Phillips taught students about X’s and O’s while out of the league last year, as did current Giants offensive coordinator Mike Sullivan.
Greg Blache, an assistant coach in the NFL and on the college level for nearly four decades, spoke to the group this week and helped them make connections with current coaches, scouts and GMs.
"I was someone who was on the inside and, in the early part of my career, I knew I didn't know enough. So the idea was to get the guys to hit the ground running for entry-level jobs," Hatman said. "We're not training guys to be GMs or heads of personnel right away. We're getting them ready to start their careers on the right note so they're not floundering around. That helps the individual and the team."
The players' Trust loved the idea of helping them transition, so that's how the organization got on board. But what really made the Scouting Academy's group interesting this week in Mobile was the company Peprah and other former players, like one-time Cardinals defensive back Jay Taylor, were keeping during the three-day event.

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Looking for a career in construction management?

Former NFL players will now have an opportunity to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in Construction Management from Rowan University.  This new program was created in cooperation with North America’s Building Trades Unions (NABTU) through endorsements and will be directed by Steve Krone, director of construction and engineering management at Rowan University. 
The construction management program will use the same curriculum that is in place at the National Labor College. Designed for Building Trade members, the online program has opportunities to connect with faculty face-to-face every week through a video chat software similar to Skype.
Rowan University will begin enrollment soon and former players are encouraged to contact the university. The seven-week program will prepare students to supervise, manage, and inspect construction sites, buildings, and associated facilities. Rowan University will allow students to transfer credits earned through prior college work, apprenticeships, testing or a prior learning assessment.
Rowan University is a well-known public institution that is part of the New Jersey State University system and has a strong commitment to joint labor-management relations.  The university, for example, recently completed $350 million in signatory construction on its campus with plans for $650 million more.  Rowan also has NABTU representation on its governing board, and its president has close ties with Building Trades leaders in the state.   
The NABTU offers comprehensive formal craft training programs that set the standard in the construction industry. It also has a partnership with The Trust, which offers a scholarship fund to former players for qualified programs, including the degree in construction management from Rowan University.

To apply                                  
Admissions Phone: (877) 787-6926
Construction Management
Virtual Campus Tour:          

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Registration is now open for the 2016 Former Players Convention, which will be held in Maui, Hawaii from March 19-23, 2016.

Join us for four days of reuniting and networking with teammates, exciting guest speakers, sports, island excursions, and fun events for the entire family.

The first 100 former players who register will receive $500 towards either their flight* to Hawaii or hotel room costs** during the event. This would be in addition to the special hotel rates that are guaranteed and start at $259/night + taxes and fees.

If you have any questions, please call Former Player Services at 
(202) 372-9132We hope to see you In Hawaii!


Register Now

The $500 flight credit is for the former players’ flight only and cannot be transferred. To be eligible to receive the credit:

  • Flights must be booked through Stacey McAlexander at World Travel (888-505-6375 x5845);  Flights must be paid for within 24 hours of making your reservation or your name will be removed from the list and a ‘space’ will not be held for you.
  • You must attend the entire conference (March 19-23).
  • You must stay at the Ritz Carlton Kapalua. 
  • The $500 flight credit will be reimbursed by the NFLPA after the event.
  • For flights less than $500, you will not be rebated the difference between your ticket cost and $500.

 **$500 hotel room credit is for the former players’ first room only (additional rooms do not qualify). To be eligible to receive this credit, you must attend entire conference (March 19 – 23).  The $500 credit will appear on your hotel bill at checkout.

Former Players Services Department 

5 Habits Mentally Tough People Embrace Every Day
By Jessica Stillman of Inc.
Grit, science says, is more important than innate ability when it comes to achieving success. Maybe that’s why a post I wrote back in October listing psychotherapist Amy Morin’s habits to break if you want to be exceptionally mentally tough seemed to strike a chord with so many readers. A follow-up piece with advice from Morin on how to tell if you have above average levels of grit was equally popular.
Mental toughness, it seems, is something nearly everyone would like to have—and which many of us think we could benefit from working on. So if you’ve tested your own level of resilience to see where you stand, and kicked the bad habits that Morin called out in her first piece, what’s the next step to pumping up your mental toughness? According to the latest bit of advice from Morin, it’s adding good habits to your routine.
What behaviors should you engage in every day for greater grit? Morin listed nine when she spoke with Business Insider on the topic. Check out the complete post for the deep dive, or read on for a handful of her suggested habits to get you started.
1. Monitor Your Emotions
Contrary to popular belief, mental toughness isn’t about suppressing your emotions, it’s about monitoring them, Morin asserts. The truly mentally tough “monitor their emotions throughout the day and recognize how their feelings influence their thoughts and behaviors. They know sometimes reaching their greatest potential requires them to behave contrary to how they feel,” she says.
2. Practice Self-Compassion
Nor is mental toughness about being your own harshest critic and strictest taskmaster. Instead, those with exceptional resilience speak to themselves with kindness and compassion, not hectoring and insults. “They respond to their inner critic as if they were standing up to the schoolyard bully. They forgive themselves for mistakes and cheer themselves on as they work toward their goals,” Morin tells BI.
3. Be Realistically Optimistic
When it comes to the right outlook for optimum resilience, it’s all about balance. Pie-in-the-sky optimism will only lead to disappointment, but knee-jerk negativity will ensure you never even try to reach your full potential. To maintain just the right amount of optimism the mentally tough “strive to re-frame their negativity,” replacing “exaggeratedly negative thoughts with a more realistic inner monologue.”
4. Set Healthy Boundaries
You can’t be mentally tough if you don’t take responsibility for your own situation. That means being firm about what is and is not acceptable to you instead of letting others influence your behavior and mood in ways that you don’t agree with. The mentally tough, in other words, “refuse to let other people dictate whether they’re going to have a good day or a bad day.”
5. Accept Responsibility
You can’t get better if you don’t admit your weaknesses and you can you learn from mistakes if you refuse to accept responsibility for them. “Rather than make excuses for their mistakes or failures, [the mentally tough] seek explanations that will help them perform better moving forward,” Morin asserts.

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Mark your calendar! Four dates you need to know for a Marketplace health insurance plan

From dentist appointments to dinner reservations, there are times when it’s probably OK to be a little late. But if you are looking to benefit from a Marketplace health insurance plan, you really need to mark your calendar to avoid fees related to being uninsured, as well as the financial risks associated with being uninsured.

Dates to know if you’re uninsured:
  • November 1, 2015:  Open Enrollment starts — first day you can enroll in a 2016 Marketplace plan
  • December 15, 2015:   Last date for you to enroll in a 2016 Marketplace plan, with an effective date starting January 1, 2016.
  • January 1, 2016:   First date 2016 coverage starts.
  • January 31, 2016:   2016 Open Enrollment ends. If you don’t enroll by this date, you can’t enroll in a health insurance plan for 2016 unless you qualify for a Special Enrollment Period.
Need health insurance? Don’t get overwhelmed by the tens of thousands of options. Instead, take advantage of Working America Health Care! You’ll receive personalized, unbiased support before, during, and AFTER plan enrollment. Visit or call 1-855-698-2479 to learn more.

Dates to know if you’re renewing your Marketplace health insurance plan

Those who are renewing their health marketplace insurance should shop around for the best value by the December 15, 2015 deadline, and expect coverage to start January 1, 2016.

Already insured? It’s still a good idea to shop around. Even if you’re happy with your plan, consider renewing through a licensed agent recommended by the Working America Health Care program.  After you’ve enrolled, as a member of Working America or a labor union, you can receive a complimentary personal health advocate, who can answer questions about coverage, help you understand your benefits, and much more! Visit or call 1-855-698-2479 to learn more.

Membership Reward Spotlight
A complimentary 2-year subscription to Robb Report magazine is now available to all NFLPA former player members. Celebrating its 40th year, Robb Report is the unquestioned authority on the luxury lifestyle. Every issue features the best automobiles, travel destinations, watches, yachts, planes, and much more. Your subscription includes annual issues like Best of the Best, Car of the Year, Ultimate Gift Guide, and the 40th Anniversary special plus free access to the iPad and iPhone editions. Regularly a $100 value. Click here for details.

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The Trust will hold and participate in various events aimed at connecting players with each other and with our services. Check this page often as it will be continually updated with new events.

  • To learn more about the transition offerings of The Trust, visit their website.

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    We are "One Team", built around a fraternity of former NFL Players who are aligned, connected and engaged, working together in life beyond football.

    800-372-2000 x132

    Nolan Harrison III, MBA
    Senior Director
    Dee Becker
    Assistant Director
    Lorenzo Kaufman
    Senior Manager
    Amber Edwards
    Membership Services Coordinator
    Nathan Johnson

    NFLPA National Office

    1133 20th Street NW
    Washington, DC 20036
    Office Hours
    Monday - Friday
    9:00am - 5:30pm EST
    Free Lifetime Membership
    Please update your contact information  to earn your free lifetime membership and to learn more about what the Former Player Services Department offers our players. Renew your membership online through your profile page on 

    Thank you for your commitment to the union who has fought for, and will continue to fight for, our rare and special fraternity. You can also call Membership Services at 202-756-9165 if you have any membership or internet questions.

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    Updated NFLPA FPSD Resource Book!
    The new resource book with information on NFLPA Former Player Services, The Trust, the PAF and other important resources is now available to view on your smart phone and tablets. Click this link for easy access. 
    Player Emergency Help
    NFL Get Help Hotline
    Upcoming Events
    Health, Career, Education and Lifestyle Programs for Former Players
    Bahati VanPelt | Executive Director

    Benefits Department

    Available to answer player benefits and insurance questions.

    800-372-2000 x155
    Miki Yaras-Davis | Sr. Director
    Bethany Marshall | Director
    Chris Smith | Asst. Director
    Adora Williams | Sr. Manager
    Brian Francis | Coordinator

    Professional Athletes Foundation

    Gene Upshaw Players Assistance Trust (PAT)
    Helping players  in need.

    800-372-2000 x166
    Andre Collins | Executive Director
    Tyrone Allen | Director
    Caryl Banks | Manager
    Leslie Isler | Coordinator
    Learn more about the Football Players Health Study
    The Football Players Health Study at Harvard University is now the largest study of its kind. This study will benefit former players for generations to come, let's keep the momentum going! To learn more about the study, click on the video above to watch and go to the website:
    Former players can sign up to receive a questionnaire by clicking here.
    Monetary grants for qualified vested former players experiencing hardships.

    NFL Player Benefits Office

    Baltimore, MD
    NFL Benefits Office for T&P, Disability, Plan 88, pension, second career, annuity and other benefits filing.

    Former Player Life Improvement Plan

    Joint replacement, discount prescription card, assisted living and more.
    Off the Field is the national football player wives association 
    Click HERE for more information on Off The Field Players' Wives Association

    Membership Rewards

    ONE TEAM Shop is the official online store of the NFLPA, and features name and number product for EVERY current player.  Former players be sure to check the Member Benefits section of for your 30% discount code.
    Former player members receive a 20% discount on purchases at NFLShop and 877-NFL-SHOP
    Links Unlimited provides 20% to former player members.
    Save 40-50% through Callaway Golf's VIP Program. Email your name and email address to We will set up your online account so you can begin shopping immediately.
    Union Plus is brought to you by Union Privilege, established by the AFL-CIO to provide consumer benefits to members and retirees of participating labor unions. Learn More

    Transition Resources

    Featured Partners

    Athlife provides assistance to former players with all aspects of their education goals and helps players develop degree completion plans that allow flexibility to not return to campus or transfer. 

    All former players are eligible with an NFLPA Former Player Membership. (Former players with 2+ credited seasons are eligible through The Trust.)

    To access the membership benefits of Athlfe, please call:
    (202) 756-9132.
    The YMCA believes in strengthening individuals and communities. With a presence in 10,000 neighborhoods across the country, the Y has the reach and ability to help you transition to life off the playing field.

    All former players are eligible with an NFLPA Former Player Membership. (Former players with 2+ credited seasons are eligible through The Trust.)

    To access the free YMCA membership, call today:  
    (202) 212-6188

    Health Partners

    Mayo Clinic would like to reach out to invite former player members to receive a proactive comprehensive heart health evaluation at one of their locations.  Schedule an appointment by contacting Elva Ortiz (Program Coordinator) at or call 480-301-8216
    If you and your family do not have health insurance, the NFLPA is proud to recommend Working America Health Care.  In collaboration with GoHealth, Working America Health Care offers you:
    • information about health care law
    • an easy way to shop for health insurance
    • the lowest rates available
    Don't sit on the bench and miss out on this unique opportunity.

    Call 800-907-8683 or visit the NFLPA specific website.

    Business Mentoring

    With over 13,000 volunteers in 347 chapters, SCORE has the expertise you need to succeed.

    Use the Chapter Locator to find a SCORE office near you and request a free face to face mentoring meeting.


    The NFLPA has partnered with Penn State World Campus to support the educational needs of NFLPA members. The World Campus offers more than 100 accredited graduate degrees, undergraduate degrees, certificates, and minors.

    Penn State ranked as the No. 1 institution in the nation for producing the best-prepared, most well-rounded graduates who are most able to succeed once hired, according to a survey by The Wall Street Journal.

    Penn State World Campus offers NFLPA members a tuition reduction benefit for all degree and certificate programs. Learn more about how you can receive a top-quality education, completed at your convenience, from one of the world’s most renowned universities. 
    The NFLPA has partnered with the University of Phoenix to provide former player members with educational opportunities that can provide you with skills and knowledge to help you excel.  To learn more , visit our University of Phoenix member page.
    American Public University (APU_ and the NFLPA have teamed up to offer former player members flexible and affordable online degree programs and career services.

    Former player members also have access to a variety of career services, including career coaching, mentoring and networking opportunities, as well as university-sponsored job boards and career fairs.

    Visit APU's former player website for more information.

    Social Networks

    NFLPA Former Players
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    Don't forget to visit the NFL Players Association's website for updates and information about all players. One Team!
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    Contact Us

    1133 20th St NW, Washington, D.C. 20036

    Nolan Harrison III, MBA
    Senior Director, Former Player Services
    NFL Player 1991 - 2000
    Twitter: @nolanharrison74

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