Jahvid Best files lawsuit against the NFL, helmet manufacturer Riddell

Jeff Zelevansky

What do you think about this lawsuit?

One of the most satisfying stories of the offseason has been the return of Jahvid Best to Cal as a student assistant. Best won't be able to go on recruiting trips or do any active recruiting outside of Berkeley, but it should allow him a nice little transition period where he can decide whether coaching is what he wants to do next. Best should be able to complete his Cal degree (he left after his junior season to declare early for the NFL Draft) and then be able to decide which career path he wants to choose, whether it be football-related or something else entirely.

However, Best isn't quite down with the NFL. He is suing the league and helmet manufacturer Riddell.

Best, a first-round draft pick in 2010, suffered three concussions while with the Lions, after having two during his college career at Cal. He has not played since suffering his last concussion in October 2011.

His lawsuit argues that the NFL knew about the risks of head injuries suffered by players but didn’t do enough to protect them. The lawsuit also names helmet manufacturer Riddell as a defendant and seeks unspecified "economic and noneconomic" damages.

Best also has a worker's-compensation claim pending against the Lions, which is why they’re not included on the lawsuit, according to attorney Bret Schnitzer.

Concussions are a hot topic in the NFL right now, and Best's lawsuit is another salvo against the league's image regarding its safety protocols against head injuries. This will be one case worth monitoring just to see where it ends up.

What do you think about this case? Does Best have a chance of winning his case or reaching a settlement with the league for his injuries?

Note: Read Nick's excellent column on concussions from last year and the impact it's had on his football fandom.


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