Some three thousand former pro-football players are now involved in concussion lawsuits against the NFL. The crux of their argument is that the league did not protect the players from risks that the NFL knew they were facing with head injuries.
What the NFL knew, when
The argument against the NFL focuses on the fact that the players allege that the league has a duty to provide players with rules and any information that can protect the players as much as possible from health risks. The suits contend that the failure of the NFL to improve safety was negligence on the part of the league.
The lawsuit argues that the NFL ignored the consequences of repeated blows to the heads and concussions. As medical research revealed more connections between concussions and dementia and other problems, it at best ignored and at worst denied that the research was true.
Master Concussion Complaint
In June, the lawsuits were consolidated as a master complaint, meaning that all of the suits work together on the technical aspects of the case. The NFL claims that the collective bargaining agreement between players and owners means that players are not allowed to sue for injuries.
The master complaint counters that the NFL committed fraud and negligence because it “was aware of the evidence and the risks associated with repetitive traumatic brain injuries virtually at its inception, but deliberately ignored and actively concealed the information from the Plaintiffs and all others who participated in organized football at all levels.”
The NFL functions as a sort of monopoly and controls everything involved in football, including health and safety. Despite having this power and knowing the dangers of concussions, the complaint argues that the NFL refused to use this power to help protect players.
The MBTI Committee
In 1994, the NFL created the Mild Traumatic Brain Injury Committee to research the effects of concussions. Essentially, by creating the committee, the NFL assumed a common-law duty to “use reasonable care” when researching the issues, according to the complaint.
It is alleged, however, that the NFL used the MBTI Committee to create a “campaign of disinformation” meant to deny the research that continues to reveal connections between concussions and longterm damage to the brain. The suit claims that the NFL created the committee to create false and misleading research and was aware of the body of scientific evidence disagreeing with what their own research was saying.
NFL Concussion Lawyers
The NFL Concussion Lawyers at the Strom Law Firm are currently accepting cases involving brain damage and concussions for former players. Call today for a free consultation. 803.252.4800