According to previous news reports, NFL filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuits last August and repeatedly stated publicly that it did not intentionally mislead the players and has in fact tried to better protect their health.
Consequently, the players filed a brief last October 24 before the U.S. District Court of Philadelphia asking the judge to reject the said motion to dismiss the lawsuits. The players contest the league’s framing of the cases as a labor issue that should be regulated by the sport’s collective bargaining agreement instead of the legal system.
The players contest on the said brief that relevant CBAs did not cover long-term brain injuries, that the NFL committed fraud by not unveiling the risks of repeated head trauma, and that the league has a common law duty to protect players.
The brief further explained that the league knew very well that players were exposed to risks of severe brain injuries and yet did nothing to prevent them from occurring. In addition, it even failed to warn players about the dangers of concussive and sub-concussive impacts and did not advocate preventative measure changes and worse, it failed to implement equipment standards adapted for brain injury.
Furthermore, the brief also stated that on the league’s watch, football has become the site of probably “the gravest health crisis in the sports world.”
Apparently, the league is trying to go for an out-of-court settlement while the plaintiffs are exerting much effort in bringing up the case to higher courts.
So far, there are more than 100 concussion lawsuits filed against NFL before the U.S. District Judge Anita B. Brody. Therefore, the future of this trial depends on Judge Brody’s decision whether to dismiss the case or send it back to lower courts for trial, suggested by a Los Angeles injury attorney.