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NFL Sued for Allegedly Concealing Brain Injury Risks

7/20/2011 4:00 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

Seventy-five former professional football players are suing the NFL, claiming it intentionally concealed the harmful effects of game-related concussions for NINETY YEARS.

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According to the lawsuit, filed today in L.A. County Superior Court and obtained by TMZ, the players and their wives claim, "The NFL knew as early as the 1920's of the harmful effects on a player's brain of concussions; however, until June of 2010 they concealed these facts from coaches, trainers, players and the public."

Among the 75 players -- Mark Duper, a former wide receiver for the Dolphins, as well as Ottis Anderson and Rodney Hampton, both former running backs for the Giants.

The suit claims the NFL commissioned a study in 1994, titled "NFL Committee on MIld Traumatic Brain Injury" and published a report in 2004, concluding there was "no evidence of worsening injury or chronic cumulative effects" from multiple concussions.

And, the suit alleges, it was not until June, 2010, that the NFL acknowledged concussions can lead to dementia, memory loss, CTE and related symptoms. All of the players are claiming they suffered injuries as a result of multiple concussions.

In addition to suing the NFL for fraud, negligence and failure to warn ... Riddell -- the manufacturer of NFL helmets -- is also a defendant.

The suit seeks unspecified damages.

For more sports stories, check out tmzsports.com!
80 COMMENTS

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46.

Mel    

Sadly, they might win...just like the idiot who spilled hot coffee and the morons who smoked and wanted tobacco companies to pay them back for it. Next thing you know, we'll be hearing bull**** warnings at the beginning of every game, helmets will have "Caution" written on the back, and Pee-Wee kids will be trying to run in padded, plastic bubbles that Riddel, NFL, NCAA, and any other company or organization associated with sports will be paying for...like the tobacco companies forced to print stop smoking propaganda on their products. Farking ridiculous!!!!!

1089 days ago
47.

janet    

You play sports good chance you will get hurt. No way the players didn't know this. They still played at their own risk. They liked the money too much.

1089 days ago
48.

some guy    

Can't believe a billion-dollar business would put profit over the welfare of human beings.

That almost sounds... American.

1089 days ago
49.

Make it stop    

How dumb do you actually have to be to NOT know this could happen if you are playing professional football!!! Duh.....stupidity doesn't count as a reason to sue...sorry!!!!!

1089 days ago
50.

some guy    

Guys, I've heard cancer is also pretty bad for you.


Did the NFL tell its players that? Prob be a pretty important PSA if the players haven't figured that out yet.

1089 days ago
51.

Sloane    

is it the responsibility of the NFL to give updates on new discoveries about concussions?
and what if they're wrong
following the wrong study
or speak prematurely
or too late?

or is it up to the medical community?
those who study the effects on the individual
those with data and scientific proof
those who know what they're talking about

or is it up to the athlete to understand the risks of his game and keep himself informed and take responsibility for his decision to keep playing for the big bucks after concussion?

I would think that they should hold the doctors responsible if they feel like they weren't informed with as much proven medical info that existed at the time

keeping in mind that they are making new medical inroads constantly so what they know about concussions/brain trauma today is not the same theing they knew 10 or 20 years ago-let alone 90 years ago!

If the NFL chooses and pays for every doctor that they players see- then it may be their responsibility to see that they had the best that money could buy

If the players went to their own doctors and/or specialists and now in hindsight feel they weren't informed enough-how would that be the NFL's responsibility?

so many factors to consider when you don't know all the details etc......

1089 days ago
52.

some guy    

@Sloane


I agree with you. This sounds like a big can of worms.

When people are suing over stuff that happened 90 years ago, it has to be messy.

1089 days ago
53.

Sloane    

also

sad to live in a time when PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY has fallen by the wayside

and if there happened to be a player alive today who is 100 years old and he has a chronic sore shoulder, could he now sue the NFL not providing him with shoulder pads 80 years ago like the more protective ones that players of today use

it was what it was at the time......
and it is what it is today

1089 days ago
54.

Jae    

I feel bad for some of these guys from the past bc they had no clue what would be the long term effect but I dont feel bad for the guys now days. These guys who make millions complaining about hard hits and head dmg. You know the risk now days and decide its better to leave college w/o a degree and continue to play a game that can cause long term harm. There are plenty of jobs with risks: Oil drillers, coal miners, firefighters, ect.. and they know the risks b4 they start thier job. Then you have these guys who leave the sport and are broke so they want more money from the league but they nvr finished thier college degree so they have nothing to fall back on.

1089 days ago
55.

MJ    

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Here's to the demise of professional football as we know it.

1089 days ago
56.

Mare    

For ninety years no one mentioned or figured out severe blows to the head caused brain damage? That's appallingly ignorant.I suppose they don't know alcohol and drugs cause brain damage,Alzheimers, and dementia also? Doesn't anyone take the time to pay attention and read for themselves the dangers in any sport, and the possibility of damage to their head? Brain? Body? Lots of stupid out there.

1089 days ago
57.

kenny    

they must of ran out of money and are gonna do things the american way, sue. gotta love america

1089 days ago
58.

Ink62B5    

From a medical perspective, their claims seem sort of...silly.
The fact that multiple concussions can have long-term and long-lasting negative affects on health are widely accepted by the medical community as being substantiated. Whether the NFL informed the players/couches/trainers does not make the information unavailable to them as well as to the MD's that treat the players. If they sue the NFL they should be suing their MDs as well. Just saying.

1089 days ago
59.

Tim    

You play football, you get hit in the head...idiots

1089 days ago
60.

the artist formerly known as hand turkey    

Okay...except that long before 2010, it was fairly common knowledge that repeated head injuries were bad and increased risks for problems in age. I remember learning that exact thing about boxers when I was a kid.

It's not the NFL's job to dispense medical advise. The NFL is not your doctor or your daddy.

Football is a dangerous sport that can leave you dead or disabled, you knew that when you signed up.

1089 days ago
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