Sports Out West

Jahvid Best blames NFL and Riddell for concussions, files lawsuit

San Francisco 49ers v Detroit Lions

Former Detroit Lions running back Jahvid Best is suing both the NFL and helmet manufacturer Riddell, according to the Detroit Free Press. His attorney is claiming the league ignored, hid and misled Best about information regarding the risks of head injuries. According to the paperwork filed, they are seeking over $25,000 worth of damages.

The former Cal star was considered one of the best in college football. He feasted on weak defenses as a member of the Bears, and his future in the NFL looked extremely promising.

Now, the once electric running back watches football on Sundays from his couch.

Several concussions have forced Best into early retirement, and he believes the NFL and Riddell are to blame.

The paperwork claims that Best’s head trauma has left him with permanent brain damage. Part of the claim is that the NFL should not have allowed him to enter their draft with the knowledge of his college head injuries.

His injuries began his junior year at University of California, Berkeley. His first concussion came against Arizona State on Oct. 31, 2009. Just a week later, Best was hit while leaping into the end zone against Oregon State, causing him to land on his head. The injury was labeled as a “severe head injury” by the Bears.

Despite his injury-prone past, Best was selected 30th overall in the 2010 NFL Draft by the Lions.

Best began his NFL career with another head trauma, suffering a concussion just two carries into the Lions’ preseason opener in 2010.

In his three seasons with the team before being released in July of last year, Best started just 15 games and missed the 2012 season entirely due to his ongoing head injuries.

Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images

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Olivia Hops

Olivia Hops is a San Diego journalist, reporter, and producer who brings a fresh perceptive to the world of sports. Olivia has worked with U-T San Diego, U-T TV, Sports Illustrated, and other print and online publications. She is an absolute football junky, and her true passion lies with the NFL.