Reports: Hall of Famer Marino to Withdraw From NFL Concussion Suit

Image: Reports: Hall of Famer Marino to Withdraw From NFL Concussion Suit

Tuesday, 03 Jun 2014 04:48 PM

By Cathy Burke

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Former Miami Dolphins quarterback and Hall of Famer Dan Marino reportedly wants to withdraw from a lawsuit against the NFL over concussions and "football related brain injuries."

The Sun-Sentinel reported Tuesday Marino, 52, and his lawyers are in talks to get out of the litigation in which Marino and 14 other players are named.

The suit was filed last week in U.S. District Court in Philadelphia, the Los Angeles Times reported Monday.

The withdrawal could come later Tuesday, the Sun-Sentinel reported.

"It was never Marino’s intention to initiate litigation in this case, but to ensure that in the event he had adverse health consequences down the road, he would be covered with health benefits," an unnamed source told the Sun-Sentinel. "They are working to correct the error."

Marino and his lawyers also want to find out how his name got attached to the suit.
The former football great has previously said he had two concussions during his storied 17-year career, the Sun-Sentinel reported.

In their 18-page suit against the league, the ex-football players claim the NFL knew there was a link between concussions and long-term health problems for decades and "concealed information about football-related brain injuries," according to the Times.

The players  — each of whom submitted a short-form complaint saying they suffer from brain injuries and exhibit symptoms that have developed over time  — asked for monetary damages to be determined at a jury trial and for medical monitoring.

The legal papers, however, didn't provide any details about the brain injuries.

Marino spent 12 seasons as an analyst for CBS television following his retirement in 1999 before leaving the network after the 2013 season.

This latest filing follows a $760 million settlement between the NFL and more than 4,500 former players over concussions that was rejected in January by a U.S. judge who said it might not be enough to pay all of the affected players.

Up to 20,000 former players could ultimately still be eligible for payments over the settlement's 65-year span.

"I am primarily concerned that not all retired NFL football players who ultimately receive a qualifying diagnosis, or their related claimants, will be paid," U.S. District Judge Anita Brody wrote in papers filed in federal court in Philadelphia.

That lawsuit, filed in 2012, contended that the league hid the dangers of brain injury among players while profiting from the sport's violent physical contact.

The NFL has contended it never concealed information related to head or brain injuries that might occur while playing in the league.

Sol Weiss, one of the lawyers who filed the Marino group's lawsuit, is also one of the attorneys who settled the class action concussion case with the NFL, which is believed to generate total annual revenue of $9 billion to $10 billion.

A growing body of academic research shows that repeated hits to the head may produce a condition known as chronic traumatic encephalopathy, which can lead to aggression and dementia.

The research has already prompted the NFL to make changes on the field, including banning the most dangerous helmet-to-helmet hits and requiring teams to keep players who have taken hits to the head off the field if they show certain symptoms including dizziness and memory gaps.

There have been suicides in recent years involving current and former NFL players, including Jovan Belcher, Junior Seau, Ray Easterling and Dave Duerson.

Reuters contributed to this report.

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