NFL to pay up in a class action lawsuit for hiding concussion risks for decades

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(CNN) — The National Football League has reached a settlement with retired players who accused the league of deliberately concealing the dangers of head trauma, NFL.com reported Thursday, citing a league source.

The class-action lawsuit alleged the league didn’t do enough to warn players that they risked permanent brain damage if they played too soon after a concussion and that it hid evidence about the risks for decades.

More than 4,000 retired players were involved in the suit, in which plaintiffs claimed they suffered from neurological problems after sustaining traumatic impacts to the head.

CBS reports that some of the former players involved in the lawsuit “include at least 10 members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, including former Dallas Cowboys running back Tony Dorsett … Super Bowl-winning quarterback Jim McMahon and the family of Pro Bowl linebacker Junior Seau, who committed suicide last year.”

The NFL will have to pay up “$765 million that would fund medical exams, concussion-related compensation and medical research,” a federal judge said Thursday.

In recent years, the NFL has attempted to strengthen rules that govern player conduct on the field, and added sideline medical staff — unaffiliated with the teams — in an effort to more independently evaluate injured players.