PHILADELPHIA — Two wrongful-death lawsuits over the suicide of Junior Seau have been consolidated with NFL concussion litigation in Philadelphia.

A key hearing in the NFL case is set for next week, when lawyers for thousands of former players will try to keep the issue in federal court. The league wants the claims heard in arbitration, under terms of the collective bargaining agreement.

The Seau lawsuits were moved from California, where the 43-year-old linebacker died May 2 of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. His survivors allege that throughout his career he sustained violent hits that caused traumatic brain injury, depression and ultimately his death.

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