Having lived a good chunk of my life in the Cincinnati area, I’m something of a Bengals fan. This has not usually been fulfilling, but they were the home team, so there you are.
Bengals fans spend a fair amount of time grousing about the club’s management, and again, history indicates that the fans have had good reasons. Still, every once in a while, they get it right.
Devon Still is a defensive lineman who has never lived up to the potential that made him a second-round draft pick a few years ago. Frankly, the team has had other players who could increase the odds of victory. It was no surprise, then, that the team dropped him from the roster at the end of this year’s training camp. However, in some respects, this was both among the least and among the most of his immediate worries.
You see, Still’s 4-year-old daughter, Leah, was diagnosed with a Stage 4 cancer in June. Still had brought Leah to Cincinnati for treatment, but being cut from the team now meant that he was jobless and without health insurance.
Then the Bengals did something good. They have re-signed Still to the team’s practice roster, which pays him $6300 a week and restores his insurance, which means his daughter’s treatment can continue.
Football is a brutal game, of course, and the career of an athlete can be cut short for any number of reasons. However, it’s good to see that even in the hardhearted business of pro sports, there’s occasionally room to do the right thing.