August 31, 2013 |
Once a hard-driving fullback for the Eagles, Kevin Turner no longer has the hand strength to grasp a straw. That helps explain why Turner considered Thursday's news of a settlement between the National Football League and former NFL players suing the league to be as big a victory as any he had experienced on the field. Turner, 44, found out he shouldn't have to prove that his many symptoms from his diagnosed amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS, came from his eight seasons in the NFL. A lead plaintiff in the class-action settlement reached between 4,500 former players and the NFL, Turner should receive some of the $765 million the league will pay to settle lawsuits.
August 31, 2013 |
The NFL had considerable legal defenses in its fight with retired players over injuries caused by the violent collisions that are at the heart of the sport, not the least of those being a contract with the players that substantially restricts lawsuits. But in the face of public opinion, and the potential damage to its image, those defenses likely became much less important to the league. The prospect of slugging it out with the players in a multiyear litigation battle in which damaging information is disclosed and the public is regularly reminded of the sport's sometimes brutal impact on player health likely was a powerful incentive for the league to settle.
August 31, 2013 |
The National Football League reached a $765 million deal Thursday to settle lawsuits by thousands of former players who accused the league of hiding or ignoring evidence that concussions cause brain damage. Under the settlement, the NFL will pay $675 million to retired players who demonstrate medical evidence of brain injury. Payouts of up to $5 million each could go to players found to have Alzheimer's or Parkinson's diseases or other concussion-related conditions, or to their families.
August 30, 2013
THE IMPETUS for yesterday's $765 million settlement of the NFL concussion lawsuit ultimately turned out to be the clock. It was time. With its unlimited army of high-priced lawyers and nearly $10 billion in annual revenue, the NFL easily had the wherewithal to let this thing drag on and on and on in the courts. Even if the class-action suit managed to make it to trial, it would have been 5 or 6 years before there would have been a verdict. And a yearlong appeal would have followed that regardless of who was the victor.
August 22, 2013 |
As we move into fall, Eagles fans are finding they need a spring staple to take with them to the stadium: the transparent tote. You wouldn't think the NFL policy allowing only these kinds of bags would be a problem for lovers of fashion and football. After all, translucent bags have been in the fashion realm for decades. Our favorite brands from Hammitt to Chanel offer a bunch of plastic pocketbooks with chunky hardware, perfect for Monday Night Football, yes? No. "It's OK if the bag has a logo, but it has to be clear," stressed Norman Vossschulte, the Eagles' assistant director of guest experience.
August 21, 2013 |
BILL MAAS spent 10 seasons in the NFL, most of them as a 3-4 nose tackle. Asked to describe the position once, he said it's like being a fire hydrant in a dog-peeing contest. The point the two-time Pro Bowler from Newtown Square was trying to make in his own colorful way was that nose tackles take a big-time beating. Their job is to try and eat up as much space and as many blockers as possible. They sacrifice their bodies so that others can reap the glory of stuffing the ballcarrier or sacking the quarterback.
August 14, 2013 |
The opposing wills of a headstrong coach and an equally headstrong franchise player faced off again Monday, with Washington Redskins coach Mike Shanahan rebuffing Robert Griffin III's latest lobbying effort to play in the preseason. Shanahan also said he has no private deal with Griffin about playing in Week 1 of the regular season, as implied by the quarterback. As far as Griffin's statements about neither liking nor fully understanding Shanahan's practice plan for the QB, the coach reiterated that it's not his job to do everything to Griffin's liking.
August 13, 2013 |
New York Jets rookie quarterback Geno Smith practiced in Cortland, N.Y., on Sunday despite a sore right ankle that shortened his NFL debut at Detroit Friday night. Smith was cleared for practice by the Jets' trainers Sunday morning after twisting the ankle on a play in the third quarter of the New York's 26-17 loss. He was rolling out with the ball and took an odd step. On Sunday, Smith appeared a bit hobbled when he dropped back to pass on some plays, saying he was "slower" than usual, but was pretty mobile - and accurate - on rollouts.
August 12, 2013 |
PRESEASON GAMES are usually the best cure for insomnia known to man. They are about as exciting to watch as congressional hearings on C-Span (which are more readily available and work almost as well - I have to admit that I have actually fallen asleep watching myself testifying). But this year is different for Eagles fans, because we are fascinated by the prospect of getting our first look at Chip Kelly's read-option offense and 3-4 defense. Which quarterback will run it best? Will Trent Cole and Brandon Graham be able to convert to linebacker?
August 5, 2013 |
MAKE NO mistake because at the end of the day when a final player-personnel decision has to be made by the Eagles, general manager Howie Roseman, along with input from coach Chip Kelly, will make that call. But for those who have labeled Roseman as an inexperienced NFL rotisserie geek, any conclusion that he makes is the result of a thorough process that takes into account the opinions of members of the scouting department. Roseman, who at 38 is the youngest general manager in the NFL, is the first to admit that he does not know it all and learns more each day. And that's why he has a assembled a player-personnel staff that runs the full gamut of NFL scouting techniques - from an old school NFL lifer like vice president of player personnel Tom Gamble to a new school analytics guy like recent Harvard University graduate and special assistant to the general manager Alec Halaby.