Five former Kansas City Chiefs have banded together to sue the NFL for brain injuries they say they suffered during their playing careers. Similarly to prior lawsuits filed by retired football players, the five men say that the Chiefs failed to warn them of the long-term effects of concussions and blows to the head.
As a result, the players say, they currently suffer from brain injuries such as post-concussion syndrome. They also say they have chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a severe brain disease that cannot be diagnosed until after the patient has died.
Readers are probably familiar with the $765 million settlement that the NFL reached not long ago with several former players who had sued the league on similar claims. The five plaintiffs opted out of that settlement, saying that it does not apply to their cases and that they would not recover anything under it.
The retired players are Leonard Griffin, Chris Martin, Joe Phillips, Alexander Louis Cooper and Kevin Porter. All played defense on the Chiefs sometime between 1987 and 1993. As Martin explained, he and his fellow plaintiffs were not informed about the effects of brain injuries during their playing days.
Though most readers will not suffer a brain injury on an NFL field, head trauma can happen in many Kansas City workplaces. The effects of this sort of work injury can be severe and long-lasting, potentially forcing the victim to miss work for at least a short time, if not longer.
Coincidently, the same day the players announced the suit, the Chiefs held an event at their training camp to encourage mothers to let their young children play football.
Source: Associated Press, “5 former Kansas City Chiefs players sue team over head injuries,” Dec. 4, 2013