The NFL is facing another lawsuit from retired players. The league today was hit with a $700 million lawsuit, signed by nearly 200 former NFL kickers and punters, that charges the NFL with looking the other was for decades while the special teamers were mercilessly bullied by their larger teammates.
The lawsuit comes as the league is facing a bullying scandal in Miami over Dolphins’ guard Richie Incognito’s harassment of teammate Jonathan Martin. In a press conference announcing the lawsuit, former NFL kicker Raul Allegre admitted the kickers and punters were compelled to act now because of the pressure the league is facing.
“However, we are not being opportunistic. Timing aside, bullying has long been a problem for those of us who kick and punt and the NFL was well aware of that,” said Allegre, who kicked for four NFL teams between 1983 and 1991. “I played four years for the Giants and Lawrence Taylor made me wash his jock strap with my tongue every day of those four years. Bill Parcells would just laugh and tell me to make his grandkids Christmas toys.”
Allegre’s charge is just one of dozens listed by kickers and punters in the lawsuit. Numerous tales of being shoved in lockers — including former Vikings kicker Fuad Reveiz being forgotten inside his locker for an entire week — fill the document. Alleged actions range from typical bullying behavior such as wedgies all the way up to a 1990s locker room scourge of “kicker and punter tossing,” in which lineman wrapped kickers and punters in velcro and tossed them against a locker room wall covered in a velcro pad.
The lawsuit demands $700 million for pain and emotional suffering, in addition to replacement underwear torn in atomic wedgies.
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said the NFL has no comment on the lawsuit.
“Lawsuit? Is that what he was talking about?” said the commissioner. “He couldn’t see over the podium, so I had trouble hearing what he was saying.”
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