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Armour: NFL Haunted By Past Sins With Another Lawsuit

Publication Date: 
May 21, 2014
Source: 
USA Today
Author: 
Nancy Armour

Professor William Gould comments on the possible effects of a new lawsuit  being brought against the NFL fo.USA Today.

Even with all its power and success, the NFL can't escape the sins of its past.

A group of retired players sued the NFL on Tuesday, claiming the league gave them powerful painkillers and anti-inflammatories to keep them on the field, never warning them about the long-term dangers to their health. This occurs as the NFL is still trying to persuade a federal judge to accept a $765 million settlement with another group of ex-players who said the league hid or ignored the devastating effects of concussions and other head trauma. Six players in the new lawsuit are part of the concussion lawsuit.

"It does seem to reflect a trend, for a period of time, of recklessness on the part of the NFL," said Stanford law professor Bill Gould, the former chair of the National Labor Relations Board. "This litigation, if the complaint is accurate, would reflect very much the same kind of reckless or cavalier attitude toward player safety that seemed to be present in the concussion lawsuit."

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"This is a lose-lose situation for the NFL," Gould said. "Just the focus of attention on this general subject of player safety and the reckless abandon that's associated with NFL play, it can do them no good."