During his playing days, Frank Wycheck was among the best receiving tight ends in the NFL. A sixth-round pick of the Washington Redskins in 1993, Wycheck earned his stripes as one of Steve McNair’s favorite targets, first with the Houston Oilers and then when they became the Tennessee Titans.
During an 11-year playing career, Wycheck recorded over 500 receptions for 5,126 yards and 28 touchdowns. According to the former pass catcher, there is one other stat that most don’t know about (via Pro Football Talk).
Wycheck, who played in Washington, Houston and Tennessee from 1993 to 2003, estimates he had 15 to 25 concussions. He now says he has migraines, memory loss and depression.
That’s scary enough. Now imagine being impacted that much by your job and not being financially rewarded after the fact. This is the situation Wycheck and so many others might face if the current NFL concussion lawsuit goes through as currently formed.
According to the very same Pro Football Talk Report, Wycheck wouldn’t be eligible to receive any benefits out of a payout that’s expected to be in the $1 billion range.
Only players who have been diagnosed with early dementia, moderate dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease or ALS are eligible to collect.
For his part, Wycheck doesn’t seem to be too happy with this (via The Tennessean).
Let’s keep the window dressing off of it as far as having a parade and a standing ovation for it,” Wycheck said. “I know how bad I have been suffering, and I am not eligible to receive a dime. … I find it hard to believe there will be a lot of guys eligible for it because there’s not a lot of guys worse than me.
The NFL surely has an image problem here. And if more players like Wycheck come out, paying $1 billion or more in a lawsuit to cover up larger issues obviously won’t play well in the PR game.