(Reuters) – The National Football League has agreed to a $765 million settlement deal with thousands of former players who sued the league, accusing it of hiding the dangers of brain injury while profiting from the sport’s violence, according to court papers released on Thursday.
The league agreed to pay $765 million to fund medical exams, concussion-related compensation and a program of medical research as well as to cover some legal expenses, according to a filing in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
More than 4,500 players had accused the league of glorifying football’s ferocity while concealing the risks of concussions and long-term brain damage as a result of repeated hits to the head.
U.S. District Judge Anita Brody in July had ordered both sides to meet with mediator Layn Phillips, a retired federal judge, in an effort to settle the dispute.
The league had said it disclosed the information it had regarding research into brain trauma. It had previously argued that the lawsuit was inappropriate because the issue of player safety is governed by the collective bargaining agreements negotiated between the league and the players’ union.
(Reporting by Scott Malone in Boston and Barbara Goldber in New York; Editing by Paul Thomasch and Cynthia Osterman)