Former Miami Dolphins and Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Marino will withdraw from a lawsuit against the NFL, according to Dave Hyde of the South Florida Sun Sentinel.
The lawsuit filed by Marino and 14 other plaintiffs is one of more than 300 suits, representing more than 5,000 former players, alleging that the NFL hid the long-term health impact of concussions and head trauma from players. However, Marino claims he never intended to sue the league.
"It was never Marino's intention to initiate litigation in this case, but to ensure that in the event he had adverse health consequences down the road, he would be covered with health benefit," a source told the Sun Sentinel. His withdrawal from the suit could happen within a matter of hours.
Marino also provided an official, direct statement to MMQB that reads:
"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."
Marino and his legal team are also "attempting to discover how Marino's name joined the lawsuit." The initial report suggested boilerplate language was used to describe Marino and his claims, lending credence to Marino's assertion that he did not want his name to appear on the suit.
It does sound like Marino is concerned with his future health. He reported two concussions during his professional career.
The NFL and former players represented in the initial group of lawsuits agreed to a $765 million settlement last year. Under the terms of that deal, the bulk of the settlement would be used to provide medical benefits to former players and families of the deceased, including those who were not named in the suit, depending on their individual health situations. Another part of the suit would fund research and education initiatives related to head trauma.
Federal Judge Anita Brody, overseeing the case, later refused approval of the settlement over questions that it would adequately fund all potential claims, however. It is currently awaiting additional data from attorneys on both sides to demonstrate that the amount would be sufficient.