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    Posted: 26 Sep 2017 at 7:40pm
BOSTON -- Former New England Patriots star Aaron Hernandez had a severe case of the degenerative brain disease chronic traumatic encephalopathy, researchers said on Thursday. His lawyer announced a lawsuit against the NFL and the team for hiding the true dangers of the sport.

depression and other cognitive disorders .,Womens Harrison Smith Jersey,Dr. Ann McKee, the director of the CTE Center at Boston University, said Hernandez had Stage 3 (out of 4) of the disease, which can cause violent mood swings

"We're told it was the most severe case they had ever seen for someone of Aaron's age," attorney Jose Baez said.

Hernandez killed himself in April in the prison cell where he was serving a life-without-parole sentence for murder. Baez said Hernandez had shown signs of memory loss, impulsivity and aggression that could be attributed to CTE.

"When hindsight is 20-20, you look back and there are things you might have noticed," he said. "But you don't know."

CTE, has been found in former members of the military , which can only be diagnosed in an autopsy, football players and boxers and others who have been subjected to repeated head trauma. A recent study found signs of the disease in 110 of 111 NFL players whose brains were inspected.

The lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court claimed that the league and Patriots failed to protect their players' safety,Womens Dan Fouts Jersey, Avielle, leading to the disease that deprived Hernandez's 4-year-old daughter,Womens Melvin Ingram Jersey, of her father's companionship.

defendants concealed and misrepresented the risks of repeated traumatic head impacts.",Womens Sam Bradford Jersey,"Defendants were fully aware of the dangers of exposing NFL players,Womens Dalvin Cook Jersey,such as Aaron,Womens Stefon Diggs Jersey, to repeated traumatic head impacts," the lawsuit said. "Yet

NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said the league had not yet seen the lawsuit and could not comment. A Patriots spokesman did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment.

The league recently agreed to pay $1 billion to retired players who claimed it misled them about the dangers of playing football.

The "loss of consortium" lawsuit filed on Thursday is independent of the class-action suit that began making payments this summer. Baez said it was the first of its kind.

"If we have to be groundbreakers in this area,Womens Brandin Cooks Jersey, it's something we're prepared to do," he said.

Hernandez committed suicide just hours before his former teammates visited the White House to celebrate their latest Super Bowl victory and a week after he was acquitted in the 2012 drive-by shootings of two men in Boston.

Prosecutors had argued that Hernandez gunned the two men down after one accidentally spilled a drink on him in a nightclub, and then got a tattoo of a handgun and the words "God Forgives" to commemorate the crime.

Hernandez did not raise CTE in his defence at either trial because he claimed actual innocence.

"It's something I deeply regret," Baez said.

A star for the University of Florida when it won the 2008 title, Hernandez dropped to the fourth round of the NFL draft because of trouble in college that included a failed drug test and a bar fight. His name had also come up in an investigation into a shooting.

and he was rewarded with a $40 million contract.,Authentic Stefon Diggs Jersey,In three seasons with the Patriots, Hernandez joined Rob Gronkowski to form one of the most potent tight end duos in NFL history. In 2011, Authentic Sam Bradford Jersey,his second season, Authentic Brandin Cooks Jersey, Hernandez caught 79 passes for 910 yards and seven touchdowns to help the team reach the Super Bowl

But the Patriots released him in 2013,Authentic Harrison Smith Jersey, who was dating the sister of Hernandez's fiancee. Hernandez was convicted and sentenced to life in prison; the conviction was voided because he died before his appeals were exhausted,Authentic Melvin Ingram Jersey, shortly after he was arrested in the killing of semi-pro football player Odin Lloyd,Authentic Dalvin Cook Jersey,though that ruling is itself being appealed.

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