HOUSTON – Former Houston Texans linebacker DeMeco Ryans has
sued the team over the playing surface at NRG Stadium, alleging that its “dangerous”
condition caused him to sustain an injury during a game in 2014.
Ryans’ lawsuit, filed Oct. 14 in the Harris County 133rd
District Court, explains that he was playing the Texans as a member of the
Philadelphia Eagles on Nov. 2, 2014 when he suffered a torn Achilles tendon.
Joining the Texans, which made the plaintiff a first-round
draft pick from the University of Alabama, as respondents in the litigation are
the NFL, SMG, the Harris County Convention and Sports Corporation, and
StrathAyr Turf System Pty Ltd.
The suit asserts that the surface’s design and construction
were problematic. The natural grass is grown outdoors on trays that are brought
in and put into place on forklifts, the original petition says.
Per recent court papers, the Eagles placed the 2006
Associated Press NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year and two-time Pro Bowler on
injury reserve after the game and ultimately released him on Feb. 24, 2016.
“The Achilles injury at NRG Stadium prematurely ended DeMeco’s
noteworthy NFL career,” the complaint says.
“But for the NRG Stadium field, DeMeco would have, in
reasonable probability, remained in the league for another five years.”
Ryans is the second player to have worn a Texans uniform to
pursue legal action over NRG’s purportedly troublesome field conditions. Former
punter Brett Hartmann claims he suffered a career-ending ACL injury because of
Ryans seeks unspecified monetary damages and a jury trial.
He is represented by attorneys Robert Ammons and April
Strahan of The Ammons Law Firm, L.L.P. in Houston
Harris County 133rd District Court Case No. 2016-70179