NFL judge: Lawyers for Black players can join mediation

Sports

In this Nov. 4, 2018 file photo, the NFL logo is displayed on the field at the Bank of American Stadium before an NFL football game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Carolina Panthers in Charlotte, N.C. The NFL revealed Sunday, Aug. 23, 2020, that several positive COVID-19 tests were found a day earlier by one of its testing partners, and the Chicago Bears said they had nine false positives. (AP Photo/Nell Redmond)

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. (AP) — The federal judge presiding over the NFL’s $1 billion settlement of brain injury claims has invited lawyers for Black players who call the settlement racially biased to join mediation over the issue.

The lawyers have challenged the settlement’s use of “race-norming” in dementia testing since 2018.

The practice assumes Black players start with lower cognitive skills and makes it harder for them to show injury and get an award.

The judge’s order comes a day after the NFL pledged to end the practice and review the scores of retired players who believe the race-based scoring adjustments deprived them of settlements that average $500,000 or more.

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