(NEW YORK) — Coming on the heels of former San Diego Charger Junior Seau’s suicide, more than 100 former football players filed a lawsuit Thursday that alleges the National Football League (NFL) deliberately misled them about the dangers of concussions.
According to the filing in U.S. District Court in Atlanta, the players, who join over 1,500 others who’ve made similar claims, accuse the NFL of constantly refuting “the connection between concussions and brain injury.”
While what caused Seau to kill himself Wednesday at his Oceanside, Calif., home may never be known, investigators will look into the possibility that he suffered from repeated blows to the head during his 20-year career that ended in 2010.
The lawsuit calls for the NFL “to take reasonable steps necessary to protect players from devastating head injuries. Moreover, the NFL has downplayed and misrepresented the issues and misled players concerning the risks associated with concussions.”
Previous lawsuits have been combined for a trial in Philadelphia that has yet to be scheduled.
As officials have done before, the NFL contends it looks out for the safety of its players and maintains that all the lawsuits are without merit.
Ultimately, the former players may have science on their side since studies have shown a link between concussions and a neurodegenerative condition known at CTE, which causes Alzheimer’s-like symptoms and mood swings.
At least 12 dead NFL players were diagnosed with CTE during postmortem exams.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Chuck Johnston, CNN Newswire
Ray Sanchez, CNN Newswire