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Former Players' Lawsuit Against NFLPA Dismissed: Latest Details, Reaction

Published by Bleacher Report on Tue, 18 Aug 2015

A lawsuit filed against the NFL Players Association by two former players who allegedthe organization failed to disclose concussion informationto its constituents has been dismissed.Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk first reported the news. The suit, which was filed byChristian Ballard and Gregory Westbrooks in 2014, accused the NFLPA of numerous acts of malfeasance, mostly regarding alleged fraud andconspiracyto hide the dangers of headtraumafrom players."The judge found that the claims are barredby the federal Labor Management Relations Act, and that they were not timely filed under the six-month deadline that applies to claims under the Labor Management Relations Act," Florio wrote.The dismissal does not mean the NFLPA is innocent of the claims. The judge merely stated the lawsuit was invalid because it was filed well after the statute of limitations had passed.Ballard last played in the NFL during the 2012 season. A fourth-round pick out of Iowa, Ballard left the game abruptly in training camp in 2013, saying the NFL "wasn't fun for me," per USA Today Sports' Tom Pelissero. Westbrooks bounced around the league as a linebacker from 1975-1981, finishing his career with the Oakland Raiders. The pair filed its lawsuit not long after the NFL and its former players came to terms on a historic $765 million settlement regarding concussions. That settlement is still subject to a judge's approval, having gone through multiple iterations in order to ensure players receive coverage. As part of the settlement, players who suffered long-term injuries due to head trauma suffered while playing football would be eligible for payment for their medical needs. A formal appeal of the settlement by players unsatisfied with the terms was filed Monday, per MaryClaire Dale of the Associated Press (via ABC News).Ballard's and Westbrooks' suit was looking for similar restitution.Tuesday's ruling at least puts the NFLPA in the clear for now. Florio noted an appeal could be in the works. However, it has not been filed at this time.Follow Tyler Conway (@tylerconway22) on Twitter.
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