Texans seek dismissal, arbitration of ex-linebacker's 2016 turf injury suit

By John Suayan | Jun 20, 2018

HOUSTON – The Houston Texans reportedly seek to have a former player’s personal injury lawsuit arbitrated.

Recent Harris County District Court records show that the Texans earlier this month filed a motion to dismiss and to compel arbitration into the 2016 suit filed by ex-pro linebacker DeMeco Ryans.

A two-time Pro Bowler, Ryans sued the team which drafted him in 2006 on allegations he suffered a torn Achilles tendon during a 2014 regular season game as a member of the Philadelphia Eagles, an injury he asserts ended his decade-long NFL career.

The plaintiff says the playing surface at NRG Stadium caused the injury.

In their 20-page motion, the Texans explain that Ryans must submit his claims to arbitration in accordance to the mandatory grievance and arbitration provisions in the collective bargaining agreement negotiated between the NFL Management Council, on behalf of the 32 member clubs, and the NFL Players Association, on behalf of the players.

“The CBA requires players, like the plaintiff, to arbitrate any dispute about any of the matters covered by the CBA,” the motion says. “Among other things, the CBA and its incorporated rules contain a multitude of provisions and rules addressing player safety on the field as well as safety aspects of playing surfaces and stadium facilities. Because the plaintiff’s claims plainly involve a dispute regarding these provisions, his claim should be dismissed and compelled to arbitration in keeping with the parties’ agreements.”

For nearly the first six months of 2017, the suit was in Houston federal court until U.S. District Judge Kenneth M. Hoyt issued an order returning it to the Harris County 133rd District Court.

Harris County 133rd District Court Case No. 2016-70179

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