The National Football League has experienced a widespread growth in popularity over the past decade. New teams in new cities have brought new fans to the game. Teams have also played games in foreign countries, and the Super Bowl is frequently one of the most-watched television programs in the entire world. The NFL has even started a weekly Thursday Night Football game to go along with its Sunday and Monday schedule.
However, despite all of the great things that are happening, there are some major issues of concern for football fans. Injuries, especially serious injuries like concussions, are becoming a growing problem for the league and its players.
While the NFL has taken steps to protect players from dangerous hits that may cause them injuries, the league is still contesting that playing football can lead to long-term brain injuries due to repeated blows to the head.
Anyone who has ever played the game knows that football is an extremely violent sport, and even when all precautions are taken, injuries can happen. Even players that do not handle the football, like offensive and defensive lineman, still are at risk for concussions.
Many former players have filed a lawsuit against the NFL due to the connection between multiple concussions leading to long-term health problems. The league has denied that concussions from playing are leading to these health concerns, and has stated that there is still not evidence to establish a connection.
Recently, it was revealed that the league had paid benefits at least three former players because of disabilities caused due to concussions. Mike Webster, a Hall of Fame center for the Pittsburgh Steelers, died in 2002. After his death, it was determined that his brain showed signs of Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy, which has been linked to several other former NFL players that have passed away.
Webster had requested disability benefits from the league in 2000, and the NFL's retirement board granted his request. The board determined, and independent doctors confirmed, that Webster's disabilities were the result of injuries suffered due to repeated blows to the head. The board is independent of the league, as it is made up of a combination of owner and player representatives.
This evidence makes it extremely difficult for the league to state that there was no link proving that playing football caused these permanent injuries. If you or a loved one has played in the NFL, it is important to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney at this time to discuss your options. The signs of long-term health problems may still lie uncovered, and players need to be prepared for what could arise in the future.
These are extremely difficult cases, and the NFL is aggressively contesting the claims of the former players. It is important to have someone who will stand up for your rights, and your health.