Dan Marino: ‘I Am Withdrawing as a Plaintiff Effective Immediately’

June 3, 2014 by Peter King

The football world was stunned Monday when a concussion lawsuit with Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Marino as star plaintiff was announced. Evidently, Marino himself was just as stunned to hear the news.

Late Tuesday afternoon, Marino confirmed the news that was reported by the South Florida Sun Sentinel earlier in the day: that he would withdraw the lawsuit filed in Pennsylvania as a twin to the massive concussion litigation waiting for settlement confirmation in the same court. In a statement provided to The MMQB shortly at 5:40 p.m. Tuesday, Marino said:

“Within the last year I authorized a claim to be filed on my behalf just in case I needed future medical coverage to protect me and my family in the event I later suffered from the effects of head trauma. In so doing I did not realize I would be automatically listed as a plaintiff in a lawsuit against the NFL. I have made the decision it is not necessary for me to be part of any claims or this lawsuit and therefore I am withdrawing as a plaintiff effective immediately. I am sympathetic to other players who are seeking relief who may have suffered head injuries. I also disclaim any references in the form complaint of current head injuries.”

The suit was curious in the first place because Marino, as a former player in the era covered by $765 milion concussion-suit settlement, would automatically be eligible for benefits when or if Judge Anita Brody institutes the settlement that the NFL and attorneys for the aggrieved 4,000 players or player estates agreed to last September. She has reportedly been skeptical that there is enough money to cover benefits for the large number of players who could come forward claiming head injuries when they surface among retired players. For instance, players who suffer from ALS—such as Steve Gleason and Kevin Turner—would be eligible to receive settlement checks of $5 million apiece from the settlement pool. Thus the concern that there would be enough money for the legions of players who could come forward in future years.

Marino, a source close to him said Tuesday, is adamant that he is not currently suffering from any memory loss or post-concussion syndrome related to head trauma from his 17-year NFL career, which ended in January 2000.

Marino is in the process of becoming a spokesperson for the American Association of Retired Persons. He is also negotiating with the Miami Dolphins, his old team, for an unspecified front-office role.

He could not be reached for comment Tuesday evening.

 

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