When the Detroit Lions selected Jahvid Best out of the University of California with the 30th overall pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, they fully expected him to be their running back for years to come. And truth be told, he probably could have been their running back of the future—if not for the concussions he sustained during the 2011 season. Those concussions lead to him spending most of the 2012 season on injured reserve and forced the Lions to release him last summer.
Best—who had a history of suffering concussions at Cal—isn't done with the NFL just yet, though. He may not be playing in the league anymore, but he is suing the league now as a result of the concussions he suffered during his short career. Specifically, the lawsuit he just filed says that the NFL knew about the risks that he faced because of the head injuries he sustained but didn't do enough to protect him from getting more concussions. He's also suing helmet manufacturer Riddell and is looking for "economic and noneconomic damages" from both the league and Riddell.
"He was disabled from playing football due to the concussions," Best's attorney revealed today. "That's all I'm really going to say."
It'll be interesting to see how this case plays out. On the one hand, the NFL was making a more concerted effort to prevent and treat head injuries in 2010 and 2011 than they were in, say, 1991. But there will always be a risk associated with head injuries in the NFL. So if a judge rules in Best's favor, does it mean that any NFL player that's ever sustained a concussion can sue the league? Maybe. Stay tuned.
[via Pro Football Talk]