Posted on April 25, 2012 at 4:04 PM
HOUSTON — A group of former Dallas Cowboys including Hall of Famers Randy White, Bob Lilly and Rayfield Wright joined with other retired NFL players to file the latest concussion-related lawsuit against the NFL.
The suit, which accuses the league of ignoring a link between concussions and permanent brain injuries, was filed Tuesday in Houston's federal court and includes 28 former players among the plaintiffs.
In its 38 pages, the lawsuit accuses the NFL of negligence and material misrepresentation, fraudulent concealment, negligent misrepresentation and conspiracy. It alleges the NFL failed to effectively protect its players from brain injuries and later in life, dementia, resulting from repeated blows to the head.
"The bottom line is that the NFL has put its profits ahead of the health and well-being of its players," the complaint states.
" ... the NFL has purposefully sidestepped and obfuscated the concussion problem. As such, the NFL has consistently disputed the very real connection between concussions and brain injury."
Lead attorney Matt Matheny of Beaumont cited depression, mood swings and short-term memory loss among others symptoms suffered by players.
The lawsuit seeks unspecified compensatory and punitive damages. The case is one of many such lawsuits that has been filed over the past year, with the total number of plaintiffs running well into the hundreds.
The NFL denies the allegations, spokesman Greg Aiello said.
"The NFL has long made player safety a priority and continues to do so," he said in a statement. "Any allegation that the NFL intentionally sought to mislead players has no merit. It stands in contrast to the league's actions to better protect players and advance the science and medical understanding of the management and treatment of concussions."
The other ex-Cowboys named as plaintiffs in the lawsuit include Lee Roy Jordan, Ralph Neely, Chuck Howley, Larry Cole, Charlie Waters, John Fitzgerald, Walt Garrison and Preston Pierson.