Ben Utecht to testify at Senate brain injury hearing - KMSP-TV

Ex-NFL tight end, Minn. native Ben Utecht testifies at Senate brain injury hearing

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WASHINGTON, D.C. (KMSP) -

Former NFL tight end and Rochester, Minn. native Ben Utecht will testify today in from of the U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging regarding concussions on Wednesday.

Utecht played six seasons with the Indianapolis Colts and Cincinnati Bengals before retiring in 2009 after his fifth-documented concussion. He’s been a spokesman for traumatic brain injury awareness, particularly amid a $765 million settlement reached by the NFL in August of 2013 over concussion-related brain injuries among its 18,000 retired players. The NFL agreed to compensate victims, pay for medical exams and underwrite research.

Over 4,500 former athletes had sued the league, saying it hid the danger of concussions and rushed players back onto the field and profiting from sometimes gruesome hits that make for great highlight reel footage.

The settlement entailed a $5 million cap for men with Alzheimer’s disease, $4 million for those diagnosed after their deaths with a brain condition called chronic traumatic encephalopathy and $3 million for players with dementia.

Utecht will testify at the State of Play: Brain Injuries and Diseases of Aging at 2 p.m.

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