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NFL Roundup: Concussion settlement reached

The SportsXchange

A settlement in the concussion lawsuit involving more than 4,500 retired players against the NFL was reached for a proposed $765 million Thursday.

The agreement will be submitted for approval in federal court in Philadelphia.

"It literally caught everybody off guard -- nobody expected it," a source close to the situation told The Sports Xchange. "They were keeping this tight. I think the commissioner knew and otherwise only those negotiating."

The league doesn't admit fault in a news release. The amount players will receive will be "determined by the diagnosis."

According to a release from Layn Phillips, the court-appointed mediator in the consolidated concussion-related lawsuits brought by retired football players against the NFL and others, ruled on the proposal that would end the litigation against the NFL and NFL Properties and provide medical and other benefits, as well as compensation, to qualifying injured players or their families.

---Rookie outside linebacker Barkevious Mingo is unlikely to play in the Cleveland Browns' regular-season opener Sept. 8 against the Miami Dolphins as he continues recovering from a bruised lung.

Mingo, the sixth overall pick in the 2013 draft, hasn't been allowed to practice in two weeks. He was injured Aug. 15 in a preseason game against the Detroit Lions and spent 48 hours in the hospital. Two independent doctors not treating Mingo said the risk of returning from the injury before being fully healed is extreme.

Without Mingo, the Browns would start Jabaal Sheard at right outside linebacker with Paul Kruger, the newcomer from the Baltimore Ravens who signed a $40 million deal in free agency, on the left side.

---Erratic place-kicker Mason Crosby restructured his contract with the Green Bay Packers.

Yahoo Sports first reported the adjustment, which reduces Crosby's base salary this season to $800,000, down from the scheduled $2.4 million base. Crosby signed a five-year, $14.75 million contract in August 2011. Crosby can effectively recoup the entire value of the deal by achieving roster and performance bonuses this season, a $1.6 million total in incentives.

He made just 63.6 percent of his field-goal attempts in 2012.

---The New York Jets signed quarterback Graham Harrell to increase their options at a position where no sure thing has emerged in preseason.

Harrell was cut by Green Bay earlier this week after the Packers decided to go with Vince Young as their backup quarterback. The 28-year-old Harrell went unclaimed on waivers Tuesday and the Jets signed him.

Incumbent starter Mark Sanchez is recovering from a bruised shoulder suffered in the fourth quarter of last week's 24-21 preseason victory over the New York Giants and will not play in Thursday's preseason finale against the Philadelphia Eagles. Rookie Geno Smith has battled Sanchez for the starting job in training camp but has struggled with turnovers and is still slowed by an ankle injury.

Harrell, 28, was with the Packers for the past three seasons and backed up Aaron Rodgers.

---Chicago Bears wide receiver Earl Bennett could be relocating before the start of the regular season.

Bennett, who attended Vanderbilt and reunited with his college quarterback when the Bears acquired Jay Cutler, has been dealing with a concussion for nearly one month. He was a limited participant in Tuesday's practice but isn't yet fully cleared.

Seventh-round pick Marquess Wilson. Wilson, labeled a pariah by some NFL evaluators after his flap with coach Mike Leach at Washington State, has potential to become at least a No. 2 receiver and his salary is less than one-sixth what Bennett is due in 2013 ($2.245 million).

Bennett's niche is as a slot receiver, but durability is becoming an issue. He missed time last season with a concussion and, since starting 15 games in his second season in 2009, Bennett had only 11 starts the past three seasons.
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