NFL says Nearly 30% of Players are Stricken With Alzheimer’s or Dementia After They Retire

Washington Redskins’ Clinton Portis (26) suffers a concussion on a play against the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta. (Scott Cunningham | Getty Images)
Washington Redskins’ Clinton Portis (26) suffers a concussion on a play against the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta. (Scott Cunningham | Getty Images)

The NFL believes that nearly three in 10 former players will develop debilitating brain conditions, and that they will be stricken earlier and twice as often as the general population.

The disclosure Friday comes in data the league prepared for its proposed $765 million settlement of thousands of concussion lawsuits.

Both the league and players’ lawyers estimate that 28 percent of the retirees will develop Alzheimer’s disease, moderate dementia or more serious neurological problems.

That would represent nearly 6,000 of the 19,000 living former players. Dozens of them could develop Lou Gehrig’s or Parkinson’s disease.

A federal judge in Philadelphia has granted preliminary approval of a settlement plan that offers awards reaching $5 million. However, most men would get far less.

The retirees must decide next month whether to participate.

Source: The Associated Press