Extra Points: Rivers, Brown, Johnson

A federal judge has approved a plan to resolve thousands of NFL concussion lawsuits that could cost the league $1 billion over 65 years, Maryclaire Dale of The Associated Press writes. The awards could reach $1MM to $5MM for those diagnosed in their 30s and 40s with Parkinson’s disease or Lou Gehrig’s disease, or for deaths involving chronic brain trauma. NFL actuaries estimate 6,000 of nearly 20,000 retired players to someday suffer from Alzheimer’s disease or moderate dementia. The settlement between the two sides ends a four-year legal battle. Here’s more from around the league..

  • A possible trade of Philip Rivers to the Titans is complicated by the fact that Tennessee would have to work out a contract extension in the days prior to the deal, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network tweets. A deal couldn’t begin and end while the Titans are on the clock at No. 2 since Tennessee would need permission from the Chargers to work on Rivers’ contract (link).
  • Antonio Brown took to Twitter to explain his absence from the Steelers‘ voluntary offseason program. “Just enjoying my new born Ali can not wait to get back with my teammates! I am dad first and working to be best player I can be,” Brown tweeted. It’s very possible that Brown is holding out for a new contract too, but that’s apparently not the sole reason.
  • Andre Johnson insists that he didn’t sign with the Colts just to get revenge on his former team, as Stephen Holder of the Indy Star tweets. “I didn’t come here because we play against the Texans twice a year..I have bigger goals than just playing against the Texans,” the wide receiver said. Johnson signed with the Colts on a three-year, $21MM deal.
  • Former Oregon tight end Colt Lyerla working out this spring and is a player worth watching, Matt Miller of Bleacher Report tweets.
  • Washington defensive tackle Danny Shelton feels that he could form an “unstoppable” duo with Haloti Ngata if the Lions draft him, Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press tweets.
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