NFL Stars Jerry Rice, Jim Brown Praise Trump for Pardoning Eddie DeBartolo Jr.

The Associated Press

President Donald Trump pardoned former San Francisco 49ers wonder, Eddie Debartolo Jr., on Tuesday, the White House announced.

Former NFL players Jerry Rice, Jim Brown, Ronnie Lott and Charles Haley met with Trump regarding the pardon for DeBartolo, that was announced at the White House with Deputy Press Secretary Hogan Gidley.

Speaking to reporters outside of the White House, former football star Jim Brown thanked Trump for the pardon calling DeBartolo a “great man.”

Hall of Fame receiver Jerry Rice also recognized DeBartolo for building a successful team.

“It was all about family. That’s really what they stood for. And that’s the reason why I think we won so many championships,” Rice said.

Rice also thanked Trump for the pardon.

“I take my hat off to Donald Trump for what he did,” he said.

DeBartolo was indicted in 1998 after Louisiana Governor Edwin Edwards demanded that he pay him $400,000 for a Louisiana riverboat gambling license. He plead guilty for the offense of failing to report extortion and avoided prison.

He was punished by the NFL who suspended him for a the 1999 season and fined him $1 million.

DeBartolo never returned to the team despite presiding over their five Super Bowls victories in just 14 years.

The iconic owner was elected to the Pro-Football Hall of Fame in 2016.


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