Former NFL players file painkillers lawsuit against league

(WJLA) - They led one of the best football teams to ever suit up in the NFL, and now Hall of Famers Richard Dent and Jim McMahon of the 1985 Chicago Bears are the driving forces behind a huge lawsuit against the league.

The suit states that players were freely given strong painkillers by team doctors and training, and claims that the league created a “culture of drug misuse, substituting players’ health for profit.”

Washington Redskins legend Charles Mann is not a part of the lawsuit, but he did play in the same era with Dent and McMahon, along with many of the 500 other players named in the suit. He says that when he played, there was free access to painkillers, which were supplied by team medical staff.

He adds that it was common practice, saying that players – including himself – would take the drugs freely before, during, and after games. The thought back then, he says, was to do what you had to do to mask the pain of an injury and get back out on the field.

Mann says he was on a strong pain drug for most of his 11-year NFL career, and could easily have developed an addiction.

“I was on it so much that I could just pop it whenever I needed it...I am scared to know what might have happened to me if I had continued that."