Dave Robinson Raymond T. Rivard photograph

Packers HOFer Dave Robinson joins NFL players in asking Roger Goodell, league for help

Former Green Bay Packers linebacker Dave Robinson, the Pro Football Hall of Fame-elect great who played in the 1960s under Vince Lombardi, has joined many other Hall of Fame players who signed a letter sent to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell that states they are concerned about the “continued denial of the link between repeated head impacts and permanent brain damage.”

In addition to Robinson, who will be inducted into the Hall of Fame in ceremonies to be held in just a few days in Canton, Ohio, the letter was also signed by other HOF players including Tony Dorsett, Floyd Little, Leroy Kelly and Paul Krause, among others.

The league is being sued by more than 4,000 players who have indicated they suffer from neurological conditions they say are directly related to concussions incurred during their careers. Among those who signed this most recent letter are Dorsett, Kelly, Krause, Lem Barney, Chris Doleman, Mel Renfro, Tommy McDonald, Randy White, Rayfield Wright and Joe DeLamielleure. They are all litigants in the case against the NFL.

In addition to those players, Robinson, who played for Lombardi when the Packers dominated the NFL in the 1960s, also signed the letter.But league officials told the AP earlier this week that the letter isn’t accurate – they say the league is doing everything they can to address the issue.Here’s how league spokesperson Greg Aiello responded:“We have not seen the letter, but we make no such denial regarding concussions. In fact, our concussion poster for players in every locker room, created in conjunction with the CDC a few years ago, states: ‘Repetitive brain injury, when not managed promptly and properly, may cause permanent damage to your brain.’”

Greg Aiello, NFL spokesman

The case by the players against the league was recently ordered into mediation by U.S. District Judge  Anita B. Brody. A progress report on the mediation is expected out by Sept. 3 and in the meantime, attorneys representing the league and the players have been ordered not to talk publicly about the case.

But the players who wrote the letter timed their effort, as the Hall of Fame inductions – including that of Robinson – is just around the corner.

A portion of the letter that was obtained earlier this week by the AP, stated:

“Legions of former players suffer short-term memory loss and other neurological issues, and many cannot even remember taking part in some of the NFL’s greatest moments. In the meantime, the NFL publicly touts the ‘benefits’ it provides to former players with brain injuries, while denying these players necessary medical monitoring, long-term care, and security.

“No one wants to see another generation of players suffer this fate. As former players, we refuse to stand by quietly and watch men who unknowingly sacrificed their health and future to the NFL go without the care they desperately need.

“Mr. Goodell, we ask you, as the commissioner of the league, to provide the security and care all former players and their families deserve.”

The case remains open as the former players continue to suffer.It will be a landmark decision once the courts formulate its conclusions.
Stay tuned … 

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Tags: Dave Robinson Green Bay Packers NFL Players Vs. NFL Litigation

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