NFL Concussion Settlement is Like a Wild West Shootout

Note: This synopsis also includes the latest on the status of settlement advances with a “jump” to advance directly to that spot if you desire.

Imagine you’re watching an old spaghetti western set in a town run by an aging saloon girl. A gang of gunslinging robbers have taken up residence in town but the saloon girl enjoys their flattery and tells the sheriff to “let them be,” and aside from an occasional flash of bravado he mostly does as he’s asked. There a subplot running in which a greedy banker is foreclosing on most of the widows in town and those whose husbands have been shot down by the band of outlaws and lay incapacitated. Those who resist the outlaws’ demands find their homes burning to the ground. The movie’s been running for two hours now and you’re wondering the cowboy in a white hat is going to ride in and restore order. Or will he?

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new york liberty social justice

New York Liberty Seek Justice for Women in Prison

by Derek Helling

New York’s WNBA team, liberty is much more than a word on the front of their jerseys. “I want to make sure it’s highlighted that 80 percent of women who are incarcerated are mothers,” Tina Charles stated. “From 1980 to 2017, the number of women incarcerated increased by more than 700%, it really shows how important this issue is not just for the New York Liberty but for the community…”

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New Forms Set Retired Players Up for NFL Ambush

Evil Headmaster Roger Goodell

As a result of Judge Brody’s orders restructuring the MAF program, all but eliminating the settlement’s provisions and protections for pre-effective date claims, and narrowing the generally consistent standard to a hair-thin line, the claims administrator has developed new forms that whether or not by design, will lead players into a trap the NFL has long awaited.

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NFL Settlement Attorneys Appeal Fee Issues to Third Circuit

Anita B. Brody

Last Friday, Locks Law Firm, on behalf of itself and thirteen other appellants, filed a 68-page brief contesting Judge Anita B. Brody’s allocation of common benefit attorney fees to the Third Circuit.

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Bonus: must-read – from Deadspin:

“He had Stage 4 CTE, but the NFL Said Dad Wasn’t Sick”

Deadspin George Andrie

Illustration: Elena Scotti (G/O Media), Photo: AP

By Dom Cosentino

George Andrie, an original member of the Dallas Cowboys’ famed Doomsday Defense, had Stage 4 chronic traumatic encephalopathy at the time of his death last August at the age of 78, according to researchers at Boston University who posthumously examined his brain. Andrie’s diagnosis was confirmed by his daughter, Mary Brooks.

Andrie had suffered from dementia toward the end of his life. That he actually had CTE is another indication that the NFL concussion settlement keeps failing the people it’s supposed to help,

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Hidden inside the concussion epidemic: Inner ear damage


The increasing recognition of concussions by medical practitioners and the population at large is a huge advance for those of us who take care of head-injured patients.

Unfortunately, the recognition of a simultaneous inner ear problem was, and still is, routinely missed. Inner ear damage during a concussion is not only common, it is difficult or near impossible to have a concussion WITHOUT having an inner ear injury. After a car accident and a trip to the emergency room, broken bones get set and bleeding gets tended to, but the damage to your inner ear usually doesn’t get noticed. Why?

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Documents Galore! (And me underneath the pile)

Sheilla buried in documents

I wanted to get an article out this week.  I really did.  But it’s just been one of those weeks where the documents (and some other interesting leads) continue to accumulate and as soon as I’ve settled on a subject to write about, something new has bumped it down further on the cue.  So–instead of an article, I’m going to give you documents this week.  Lots of documents spanning lots of cases starting with a consolidated brief filed by former Class Counsel to the NFL Concussion Settlement, Gene Locks,  appealing common benefit fee allocations that went primarily to Seeger Weiss.  The brief is accompanied by 13 volumes of supporting appendices spanning 9,891 pages.  You can find all the documents on our Document Cloud folder–or– I’ve linked two of particular interest below.

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The NFL Now Thinks Having Dementia is a Crime

In fact, the NFL now considers it a crime punishable by a 20-year prison term!

Roger Goodell Wants to Send Former Players to Prison for Dementia Symptoms

This is not an exaggeration. In an investigation that Advocacy for Fairness in Sports has been pursuing for the past two months, we’ve finally obtained evidence of the NFL’s latest bid to stop dementia claims in their tracks and to once and for all, put a lid on the uncapped settlement purposed to compensate players suffering from latent brain injury.

The NFL is seeking to permanently disqualify players from the settlement program and pursue criminal fraud charges against them if they feel they have “evidence” of a player misrepresenting any details of his condition.

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Brain Injury Casts a Dark Cloud Over #NFL100

football and brain injury

Quarterback Ken Stabler, also nicknamed “The Snake”, played in the NFL from 1968 to 1984. He was the 1974 NFL MVP and was selected as the NFL 1970s All-Decade Team. These accomplishments came with a price though, as he experienced multiple health conditions when he retired. The late Hall of Fame quarterback was diagnosed with chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) seven months after his death in February 2016. While he had died because of complications related to colon cancer, family members reported that he exhibited classic signs of cognitive decline in his later years. He would repeat himself, get lost in familiar places, be sensitive to simple sounds, and have difficulties navigating intersections while driving.

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NFL Disability Feeds Another Player to the Lions

Darren Mickell thrown to lions by #NFL Roger Goodell John Mara, Jed York, Clark Hunt , Mark Davis

“A full and fair review required the Plan to construe Plan terms according to their plain meaning, avoiding interpretations that would render some language meaningless. A full and fair review also required the Plan to consider all available evidence, as opposed to automatically deferring to its hired evaluators’ employability conclusions and disregarding all evidence proffered by Mickell. A full and fair review further obligated the Plan to consider the cumulative effect of all of Mickell’s conditions on his ability to meet the definition of Disability, rather than evaluating each condition in a silo.” So reads the opening statement in Darren Mickell’s appellant brief to the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals, following denial of his disability claim.

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Speaking of Throwing Players to the Lions…

Roger Goodell and lionThe  NFL Concussion Settlement has done more than its share.  Today Amon and Roxanne Gordon, represented by Wendy Fleishman of Lieff Cabraser filed an appeal of the denial of Amon’s settlement award after the NFL was given four times to challenge it and attempt to discredit his diagnosis.  Their claim is the first to be taken all the way to the Third Circuit.  Wishing them much success in arguing their case.  Click below to read the Notice of Appeal 

Amon Gordon Notice of Appeal to the Third Circuit

10772 0 Notice of Amon Gordon Appeal to Third Circuit (Text)

And here’s the background on how Amon’s thrice approved claim came to be denied. 

If there’s one thing consistent about the NFL, it’s their passion in denying benefits to former players. Roxanne Gordon described how the NFL fought and fought until her husband Amon’s thrice approved claim was denied when the NFL was given a 4th bite at the apple, and then backed up with a final denial by Judge Anita B. Brody on July 2.
Judge Brody’s order was cryptic at best, alluding to references that were no where to be found. She did not attach supporting documents with the arguments she viewed just as she didn’t in two rulings on June 13, which I wrote about shortly afterward. The article had barely been published when I was contacted by Kendra Stabler Moyes, daughter of beloved Raiders quarterback Ken Stabler, to tell me one of those denials was her father’s claim. Now the family affected by Judge Brody’s most recent ruling has come forward.

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NFL Disability Pulls Rug From Under Player Disabled Since ’82

Delvin Williams NFL Disability Roger Goodell Groom Law

The NFL gridiron has often been compared to the gladiatorial displays of Ancient Rome. While the modern gladiators don’t typically fight to the death as their ancient counterparts did, they seldom escape the high-stakes contests without serious injuries.

It’s almost as if a private gladiatorial contest is taking place off the public’s radar—one performed on demand and at the pleasure of the league’s 32 billionaire owners—and with the apparent blessing of the NFLPA. It’s a contest that pits the NFL and NFLPA Plan’s chosen champion, Groom Law Group, against the retired players who return to collect the benefits they bargained for. Delvin Williams is the latest retired player to be forced into the ring.

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NFL Concussion Settlement News:

Chris Seeger Submitted his third post-effective date fee petition on July 25. Click below to access the complete document. 

Seeger July 25, 2019 Fee Petition

10767 Seeger Third Verified Fee Petition 07 25 2019 (Text)

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Layers of Fraud Revealed in a Scheme to Defraud Brain-Injured Former NFLers

Tim Howard-NFL Concussion Settlement -Fraud

Down on his luck after retiring from the NFL following a 2001 Super Bowl win, and now in his mid-40s, Larry Webster listened carefully as a lawyer in Tallahassee, Florida, told him that he was guaranteed a 6-figure check from the newly inked NFL Concussion Settlement. The plight of Webster and numerous other retired NFLers is told in extraordinary detail in an investigative report by Law360’s Ryan Boysen.

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