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Photo: Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The NFL on Wednesday pledged to halt its decades-old use of "race-norming" — a practice that assumes Black players have a lower baseline level of cognition — in its near-billion-dollar concussion settlement, AP reports.

Why it matters: The use of  "race-norming" meant that Black players had to show a larger cognitive decline to qualify for the settlement. The NFL said Wednesday that it will also review previous scores for potential race bias.

  • The announcement comes after two Black players filed a civil rights lawsuit and a group of NFL families filed 50,000 petitions at the federal courthouse in Philadelphia, per AP.

Our thought bubble, via Axios' Jeff Tracy: Wednesday's announcement is such an important and overdue win. The next step is not only ensuring future claimants are treated equally, but that past ones who've been denied claims because of their skin color can have those decisions reviewed, and perhaps reversed.

Catch up quick: In 2013, the NFL agreed to a $765 million settlement after facing a flood of lawsuits from retired players who alleged the league concealed what it knew about the dangers of repeated head trauma.

  • The $765 million cap has since been removed, and more than $856 million has been awarded to 1,263 retired players as of May 21.
  • Those who claim their careers led to dementia or similar cognitive diseases are required to undergo medical testing to determine if they are eligible for compensation.
  • Though the NFL has said race-norming was never mandated, the organization did appeal some Black players' claims if their scores were not adjusted for race.
  • Worth noting: Medical experts have protested the practice.

What they're saying: The NFL has formed a panel of neuropsychologists to formulate a new testing protocol, according to the organization. The panel includes three Black doctors, per AP.

  • "The replacement norms will be applied prospectively and retrospectively for those players who otherwise would have qualified for an award but for the application of race-based norms," the NFL said in a statement issued to AP.

Go deeper

2022's war over racism

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

With or without Donald J. Trump atop the party, the Republican strategy for the 2022 elections and beyond virtually assures race — and racism — will be central to political debate for years to come. 

Why it matters: In an era when every topic seems to turn quickly to race, Republicans see this most divisive issue as either political necessity or an election-winner — including as it relates to voting laws, critical race theory, big-city crime, immigration and political correctness. 

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
Jun 2, 2021 - Economy & Business

Private equity giant Leon Black accused of sexual assault

Credit: Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Private equity titan Leon Black — who earlier this year left Apollo Global Management, the alternative investing giant he co-founded and led — has been sued in New York State Supreme Court for sexual assault and defamation.

Driving the news: Guzel Ganieva, the woman with whom Black claims he had a "consensual affair," sued Black for allegedly lying about the nature of their relationship and for engaging in "forced sexual misconduct."

Dozens missing after deadly Miami-area condo collapse

A massive search-and-rescue operation is underway after a portion of a 12-story condo building in Surfside, Florida, collapsed at approximately 1:30 a.m. Thursday, according to AP.

The latest: As many as 99 people are reported missing, Miami-Dade County's police director said, per the Miami Herald.