May 21st, 2014
12:17 PM ET

Former NFL Player: Nobody Ever 'Spoke About The Issues I'm Gonna Have With my Kidneys'

Eight former NFL players are named in a lawsuit filed Tuesday claiming the league puts profits over players' health.

The NFL allegedly supplied these players, including former Chicago Bears Richard Dent, Keith Van Horne and Jim McMahon, as well as ex-San Francisco 49ers offensive lineman Jeremy Newberry, with powerful painkillers and other dangerous drugs to keep them on the field at any cost.

Now these men say they're seeing serious medical complications from the drugs administered by team doctors who gave them no warnings about potential long-term effects.

Newberry, a father of four, said he had 16 orthopedic surgeries in his NFL career.

He said he now has stage-three kidney failure,  or about 30 percent of function in his kidneys.  He's currently not on dialysis but he said if he gets much worse he'll need dialysis or a kidney transplant.

On "New Day" Wednesday, Newberry spoke about his health. He said his kidney issues are directly related to the painkiller Toradol and anti-inflammatory medication he was given throughout his career.

While Newberry acknowledged football can be hazardous, he said he expected broken bones and knee surgeries. He did not expect renal function failure.

"Nobody ever in my entire life ever spoke about the issues I’m gonna have with my kidneys because I played a game of tackle football," he said.

But how can they prove these issues are endemic to the league?

Newberry said with the named plaintiffs in the case and the hundreds of others that have signed up, every team in the NFL is covered in the suit.

"This is larger problem with the culture in the NFL," he said.

When asked why as a player he would continue trusting the teams' doctors and taking the medications – he replied:

"You got a doctor that you trust, you got a team of trainers that are paid by this team to take care of you – it's their job to take care of you – why would you go out and get another doctor and assume that what they told you wasn't correct?"

The NFL has made no comment so far, with commissioner Roger Goodell only saying that he "doesn't believe any of our attorneys have had the opportunity to look at it."

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READ:  NFL Sued by Former Players Who Allege Illegal Use of Painkillers to Mask Injury

READ: NFL and ex-players reach deal in concussion lawsuit

READ:  NFL Concussions Fast Facts

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soundoff (One Response)
  1. Ron Russ

    Contact professional sports treat players like pieces of meat. As long as they bring fans into the seats everything is cool, but once they get close to their best before date they are discarded for the next piece of fresh meat.

    May 21, 2014 at 4:09 pm | Reply

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