Number of former Chiefs players suing the team for brain trauma goes up
Lawsuit raises questions on safety of football
7:23 PM, Dec 23, 2013
KANSAS CITY - More former Kansas City Chiefs players have added their name to a lawsuit against the team asking for damages from brain trauma caused by concussions.
The news has even left little league coaches wondering how the game will change if they win the lawsuit.
"90 percent of our questions are about mothers asking about is it safe what's going so it is a whole different ball game," said Jim Tuso who is a coach and director for the Missouri Wolverines.
Tuso coaches dozens of players as young as kindergartners.
He's spent $30,000 this year on protective gear.
"One of the things we try to do is not only what is the cheapest, but what's best for the players," he said.
He's feeling even more heat now that former NFL players are exposing the dangers of the game.
"It's always scary when you see NFL players say, ‘hey I wouldn't have your kids play,'" he said.
Take the latest lawsuit -- nine former Chiefs are the latest among 14 suing the team for head trauma from concussions.
Kenneth McClain is their attorney.
"Well I think that the more light that can be shed on the nature of these concussive injuries, the better off were all going to be," he said.
However the news may be leaving fewer kids on the field.
Although Tuso has had nearly 50 more players join his league, he fears that number could start to go down as more parents worry about the dangers of the sport.
"If you ask those players," he said, "they're actually saying that the worst damage was gone at the youth level and the high school level, so it's only matters of time before these possible lawsuits trickle down to see us."
That's a scary change for coaches like Tuso.
More players could join the lawsuit.
They have until the end of this year because of possible changes in Missouri law that could no longer make employers liable for occupational injuries.
McClain says it could take up to 24 months for the suit to be settled or discussed before a jury in court.