INGLEWOOD, Calif. — The Kansas City Chiefs travel to SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, California, to take on the Los Angeles Chargers, a week after a Denver Broncos linebacker tore his ACL on the field and filed a lawsuit against the team, league and stadium.
Aaron Patrick tackled Chargers punt returner DeAndre Carter on a special teams play on Monday Night Football and upon going out of bounds and he argues that the mat used to cover the camera cables caused him to turn his knee, resulting in the season-ending injury.
Patrick’s attorney, William Berman, filed the lawsuit on Tuesday against the NFL, Chargers, ESPN, Kroenke Sports and Entertainment.
The suit states, “the defendants were negligent in their operations of SOFI STADIUM in allowing a dangerous condition to exist by having three mats placed near the sideline to cover cords/cables that led to the feed for the instant NFL’s replay monitor.”
The NFL is a multi-billion-dollar sports enterprise and business, and it needs to do everything possible to protect its players from non-contact game injuries. As for Patrick’s injuries, Sofi Stadium was built at a $5,000,000,000 expense; the stadium should have the state-of-the-art equipment to protect for player safety, and not use the type of $100 mats that you would expect to see in a restaurant kitchen.”William Berman
The Chiefs will play at SoFi for the second time since it opened in 2021. Last season, the team won an overtime matchup with their division rivals late in the season 34-28.
Player safety, especially regarding turf fields, has been the center of many conversations the NFL Player’s Association started a #SaferFields campaign which has been promoted by several high profile players.
“Take care of you players, man. I hate playing on turf, I think it’s silly. The ground’s harder when you hit it,” Chiefs TE Travis Kelce said on his New Heights podcast. “More concussions happen on turf because of how players helmets hit the ground. Some cleats grab more, some cleats on top of the turf differently to make a more unstable surface which puts more pressure and strain on your joints.”
Kelce added that he counts every game he will be playing on turf before the season starts to “mentally prepare.”
“I’d rather practice in sleet, snow, thunderstorm with a chance of getting struck by lighting than run inside on the turf,” Kelce said.