In what may be one of the first football-injury lawsuits, on November 2, 2012, a jury decided that NFL-supplier Riddell, a manufacturer of football helmets, is NOT responsible for a stroke injury caused to a freshman high school student in Mississippi.
The young athlete had been wearing a helmet when he suffered a stroke during the 9th-grade football practice at school. The lawsuit was brought against Riddell for manufacturing the helmet allegedly defectively, and asserting that the helmet pushed on his neck, causing damage to an artery that led to the stroke.
After five full days of trial, the Mississippi jury determined, unanimously, that Riddell could not be held responsible because there was not enough proof that the helmet, and no other cause, resulted in his stroke, given that football is a violent sport, and that there is no way a single product can protect against all possible football injuries.
Although this particular suit is over for Riddell, Riddell remains a defendant in the NFL concussion lawsuits brought by NFL players, who assert that football helmets do not provide adequate protection to players, leading to brain injuries and concussions.