On Saturday the Pro Football Hall of Fame will pick its newest inductees, but it may also be choosing it's future residents.
Allow me to explain that last part, according to a piece from NPR, the Pro Football Hall of Fame is adding an assisted living center for aging Hall of Fame members. As part of a rather dramatic change over the next four years, the Hall has a $1.3 billion plan to add hotels, conference centers and corporate training facilities to the grounds in an effort to complement the Hall itself, and attract more visitors. Part of that plan includes the aforementioned assisted living center.
The assisted living facility will be called "Legends Landing" and NPR describes it as "part business, part nostalgia, and part a sense of responsibility" to guys who have sacrificed their health to play football. As it currently sits, there are 160 living members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, and the assisted living expansion would aim at attracting them, and future members of the Hall.
"Can you imagine anything that would be better to help you come alive than say, 'Hey, I love football, I love the game — this is where I want to spend the rest of my time,' " David Baker, the President of the Hall of Fame, explained.
While explaining the market for such a facility, Baker added that the employees could specialize in treating issues that a staggering number of former NFL players face, such as dementia.
"The people that they're interacting with would understand what they've been through," Baker added. "They would understand what the players' careers meant to them. They'd have a type of identification that people who haven't been involved with professional football couldn't have."
Beyond it being a solid PR move for the Hall, this is actually a really fascinating idea that I think would be very popular among Hall of Fame members. Just imagine a place where legends like John Randle, Emmitt Smith, Jerry Rice, Jerome Bettis, Willie Roaf, Larry Allen, Chris Carter, Warren Sapp, and Michael Irvin can all coexist under one roof, sharing stories and experiences that people would pay top dollar to hear. Something tells me that being a nurse there is going to be one of the most coveted jobs in Canton.