AirTalk for January 23, 2013

Junior Seau’s family sues the NFL, claiming head injuries led to his suicide

Tennessee Titans v New England Patriots

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Junior Seau's family sues the NFL for Seau's death.

The family of deceased NFL linebacker Junior Seau sued the NFL today for “acts or omissions” about the danger of repetitive blows to the head that led to Seau’s chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) and ultimately his suicide.

Seau’s family is accusing the NFL of deliberately concealing the consequences of traumatic brain injuries, and this isn’t the first accusation made to the NFL. In fact, the Associated Press reported over 3,800 players have sued the NFL over head injuries. The Seaus are also suing the helmet manufacturer Riddell and calling the company “negligent.”

Does the NFL promote violence in the game? Do football players know the risks involved when they sign up to play? Can these lawsuits change the way American football is played?


Jody Armour, Roy P. Crocker Professor of Law at USC Gould School of Law

David Orentlicher, Samuel R. Rosen Professor of Law; Co-director of the William S. and Christine S. Hall Center for Law and Health; Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law

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