NFL Health Update: Panthers give troops surprise Super Bowl trip

NFL HEALTH UPDATE -- JAN. 14, 2015

PANTHERS SURPRISE TROOPS WITH ALL-EXPENSE PAID TRIP TO SUPER BOWL XLIX

The Carolina Panthers, USO of North Carolina and Bank of America partnered last month to surprise Sgt. Travis Beaman and Lt. Timothy Paul with an all-expense paid trip to Super Bowl XLIX. USO of North Carolina President John Falkenbury along with Bank of America President Charles Bowman, TopCats and Sir Purr surprised them with oversized Super Bowl XLIX tickets in front of 75,000 Panthers fans.

BUCCANEERS GIVE BEHIND-THE-SCENES TOUR TO PUNT PASS & KICK CHAMP

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers hosted 7-year-old Alana Rose Garbig of Hernando, Florida for a special visit at One Buccaneer Place. Garbig represented the Bucs last Friday at the NFL Punt, Pass & Kick National Finals in Seattle. Prior to her trip out west, she was treated to a unique behind-the-scenes tour of the team's practice facility, including an opportunity to meet coach Lovie Smith and general manager Jason Licht.

Offering words of encouragement to Garbig, Coach Smith said, "Why don't you get our Tampa Bay Buccaneers season off on the right foot? You're going to dominate this weekend, okay. And we're going to follow suit after that."

Garbig did just that, earning national champion honors in the Girls 6-7 age division with a cumulative distance of 123 feet, 2 inches. Competitors each launched two punts, two passes and two kicks with scores based on distance and accuracy (in feet). The best score from each activity was tabulated to determine the athlete's total. The 10 national champions were recognized for their achievement live during FOX's telecast of the NFC Divisional Playoff Game between the Seattle Seahawks and Carolina Panthers.

CHIEFS BRING IN THE NEW YEAR AT LOCAL SENIOR CENTER

The Kansas City Chiefs Community Caring Team, featuring Kansas City Chiefs Ambassadors Duane Clemons and Anthony Davis as well as the Chiefs Cheerleaders, went to the Don Bosco Senior Center to help ring in 2015. The center helps seniors and adults with disabilities maintain independent living by providing meals, transportation, fellowship and activities that promote health, education and recreation.

"There's no better way to pay it forward than honoring our elders, so this is our way of showing them they aren't forgotten and we care about them," said Clemons.

The group hosted a Chiefs-themed bingo game and counted down to celebrate the New Year complete with party hats, noisemakers and sparkling apple juice.

FORMER PLAYER BENEFITS

Here are some statistics on programs that provide benefits to former NFL players:

• Retired players have received $69,875,464 through the Bert/Rozelle retirement plan in the past 12 months

• In the same time period, former players' widows and surviving children have received more than $10,799,552

• 333 applications have been approved under the 88 Plan since its inception in 2007.

• Since 2007, more than $37 million has been distributed through the 88 Plan.

• Since its creation in 2007, the NFL Player Care Foundation has issued $7,374,542 in grants to 753 former players to cover medical and housing expenses.

-- NFL Communications

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