As NFL concussion settlement filed, Bears legend Gale Sayers sues

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Pro Football Hall of Fame running back Gale Sayers sued the NFL over concussions Monday, the same day the proposed $765 million settlement in the case was filed in federal court.

According to court documents reviewed by The Washington Times, Sayers and five other former players sued in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.

The estate of Shawn Lee, the defensive tackle who died at age 44 in 2011 after an 11-year career, is also part of the lawsuit.

Sayers, 70, originally sued in September, but the case was quickly withdrawn after he claimed the case was filed without his permission. A new attorney, Jeannie M. Kenney from Hausfeld LLP, represents Sayers, his wife, Ardythe, and the other plaintiffs in the new lawsuit.

According to the lawsuit, Sayers suffers from “loss of memory, dementia, Alzheimer’s, neurological disorder, depression, sleep problems and irritability.”

The case ups the number of former players suing the NFL to 4,887 over 307 lawsuits, according to a count by The Times.

Sayers, who rushed for 4,965 yards in seven seasons with the Bears, is the 39th Pro Football Hall of Famer to sue the NFL over concussions.

First announced in August, the proposed settlement that would apply to all retired NFL players was filed Monday. Judge Anita Brody still needs to approve the agreement. Former players will have the opportunity to opt out and pursue legal action on their own.

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