Gale Sayers told the Tribune on Saturday that he did not consent to a lawsuit filed under his name Friday in U.S. District Court in Chicago that alleges the NFL was negligent in handling his repeated head injuries. And early Saturday evening his wife Ardie Sayers said that attorney John F. Winters called them to say the suit will be dropped and that the situation was "a big misunderstanding." Winters responded Saturday night by telling the Tribune that Sayers contacted him Tuesday to request the lawsuit filing then decided Saturday to have it voluntarily withdrawn. Sayers the Hall of Fame Bears running back said he spoke with the attorney this past week at the behest of former Bears safety Shaun Gayle but he did not agree to sue the NFL. Winters who cited client-attorney privilege to withhold certain information did say Saturday night: "Shaun Gayle had nothing to do with this (alleged original decision by Sayers to file a suit). "I had about one half of a concussion in all of the years that I played" said Sayers whose seven-year career ended prematurely in 1971 because of severe knee injuries. "I didn't say any of the things he said in the paper." Ardie Sayers said Winters of the firm Winters Salzetta & O'Brien LLC in Chicago had mailed paper work to their residence that they saw on Friday but Gale Sayers did not sign any of the papers. Winters confirmed that he received no signed documents from Sayers. "I didn't sign anything. … I talked to the attorney but there wasn't nothing to it" Sayers said. The NFL reached a $765 million settlement last month for more than 4500 former NFL players who had filed suit against the league accusing it of hiding the dangers of brain injury while profiting from the game's violence. The NFL admitted no wrongdoing in agreeing to the settlement that does not include current players.
Sayers concussion suit against NFL to be dropped
Chicago Tribune | Sep 22