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Bears Legend Gale Sayers Sues NFL, Says League Ignored Repeated Head Injuries

By Chuck Sudo in News on Sep 21, 2013 6:30PM

Photo credit: Frazer Harrison/Getty images

Chicago Bears Hall of Fame running back Gale Sayers filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Chicago Friday against the NFL and football helmet manufacturer Riddell, claiming they ignored his repeated head injuries during his playing career.

Sayers, who spent his entire seven-year career with the Bears, said he suffered headaches and short-term memory loss after his 1971 retirement.

The Bears legend also alleges he was sent back into games after suffering concussions; has characteristics of Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE); and that the league failed to warn him of the effects repeated hits to the head would have on his brain.

Sayers’s lawsuit comes a month after the NFL settled a class action lawsuit filed by more than 4,500 former players alleging the league hid the long-term effects of head trauma suffered during their playing careers.

The $765 million settlement will go to players on a case-by-case basis, pay for medical exams and underwrite research.