NFL Moves to Dismiss Lawsuit Over Controversial No-Call

On February 12, 2018, the NFL moved to dismiss the lawsuit brought by a group of New Orleans Saints season ticket holders over the controversial no-call in the fourth quarter of the NFC championship game. As you recall, a group of New Orleans Saints season ticket holders sued the NFL and Commissioner Roger Goodell with the goal of reversing their overtime playoff loss in the 2019 NFC championship game. According to their suit, Saints fans were “left bereft and with no faith in the…
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Former NFL Players Time Barred in Painkillers Suit

On February 6, 2019, the Ninth Circuit ruled that a group of former NFL player’s claim against the NFL was time barred. As we previously reported, back in May 201, lead plaintiff, Etopia Evans, widow of the late Minnesota Vikings and Baltimore Ravens player Charles “Chuck” Evans, and six other former NFL players sued the NFL claiming that the league illegally dispensed painkillers and pushed athletes to return to the field, ending their careers early. Back in 2008, Chuck Evans died a jail cell,…
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Litigation Funding Companies Claim Judge Improperly Assumed Jurisdiction in Concussion Settlement Case

On January 23, 2019, three litigation-funding companies, RD Legal Funding LLC, Atlas Legal Funding LLC, and Thrivest Specialty Funding LLC told a three-judge panel that U.S. District Judge Anita B. Brody, the judge who oversaw the NFL concussion case settlement, improperly assumed jurisdiction over third party funding contracts between the companies and the former players. The litigation funding companies argued that Judge Brody lacked jurisdiction to bar the litigation funding companies from recovering their stake in the settlement. As we have previously reported, in…
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Angry Saints Fans Sue Over Controversial No-Call

In the fourth quarter of the NFC championship game, the New Orleans Saints were tied 20-20 with the Los Angeles Rams. The Saints were marching down the field and it appeared they were on the verge of scoring a touchdown and leaving the Rams with little to no time to respond. On a crucial third down, Saints quarterback Drew Brees dropped back and threw a pass near the five-yard line, on the right sideline, intended for Saints receiver Tommylee Lewis; however, Rams cornerback Nickell Robey-Coleman…
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Lane Johnson Fights to Keep Suit Against NFL and NFLPA Alive

On January 16, 2019, Lane Johnson, a right tackle for the Philadelphia Eagles, fought a motion for summary judgment in his case against the NFL and the NFLPA. Johnson argues that an arbitrator who handled an appeal in his 10-game Performance Enhancing Drug policy suspension, failed to disclose a conflict of interest. Back in 2016, Johnson filed his lawsuit after an arbitration proceeding which upheld his 10-game suspension for violating the NFL’s performance-enhancing drugs policy. Johnson alleges that James Carter, an arbitrator and senior counsel…
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Law Firm Asks For $3.2M From Concussion Settlement Fund

Seeger Weiss LLP, a law firm representing some of the former NFL players involved in a class action lawsuit against the NFL, asked Untied States District Court Judge Anita Brody to distribute $3.2 million from a common benefit fund to pay Seeger Weiss LLP, and a handful of other firms, for work they performed in the class-action lawsuit. As we have previously reported, in April 2015, the NFL entered into a settlement agreement with almost 22,000 former players. The settlement established a 65-year uncapped…
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At The Goal Line: Rams and PSL Holders Secure Prelimary Settlement Approval

On Thursday, January 24, the Los Angeles Rams and purchasers of personal seat licenses (PSLs) procured preliminary approval of a settlement agreement in the amount of $24 million. By way of brief history, the St. Louis Rams moved to Los Angeles back in 2015. Following this relocation, several St. Louis Rams’ PSL holders brought suit on behalf of more than 46,000 PSL purchasers who secured their PSLs prior to the team’s departure. These multiple lawsuits were ultimately combined into a singular action; this combined action…
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NFL and Players Union Defends Drug Testing of Eric Reid

A joint statement co-authored by the National Football League and its players union defended the decision to administer a series of drug tests to the Panthers’ Eric Reid, reiterating the organization’s ban against performance-enhancing drugs and stating that Reid was not singled out in the testing process. Reid had claimed that the NFL and its team had colluded against him in an effort to dissuade him from protesting the national anthem. Reid, a former San Francisco 49er, was one of the first players to kneel…
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NFL Withdraws Controversial Appeal Just Before Hearing

On January 9, 2019, one day before a scheduled hearing, the NFL withdrew its appeal that previously outraged attorneys representing former NFL players in concussion class-action litigation. As we have previously reported, in April 2015, the NFL entered into a settlement agreement with almost 22,000 former players. The settlement established a 65-year uncapped monetary fund for players who could prove certain neurological diagnoses. The settlement provided a $75 million “baseline assessment program” that provided eligible retired players with neurological examinations, a $10 million education…
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Concussion Suit Brought by Former Chiefs Player’s Ex-Wife Dismissed

A suit brought by a former Chiefs player’s ex-wife has been dismissed in Pennsylvania federal court. U.S. District Judge Anita B. Brody ruled that the plaintiff, Anita Martin,could not pursue her claims alleging that the concussions sustained by her former husband, Christopher Martin, hurt their relationship. Judge Brody explained that Ms. Martin failed to opt-out of an uncapped, multi-district settlement that the NFL had reached with roughly 5,000 players back in 2015. The settlement concluded allegations that the players sustained concussions and degenerative brain diseases…
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