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NFLPA collusion law suit overturned by appeal (salary cap)

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Old 06-20-2014, 11:26 AM   #1
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NFLPA collusion law suit overturned by appeal (salary cap)

Today the 8th circuit of appeals overturned Judge Doty's decision that the NFLPA waited too long to file the collusion report and the new CBA nullified the collusion case.

I have a few questions on this result:
1) What are the chances this gets to the discovery phase forcing the NFL to release internal communication.
2) Will the teams only be able to go after financial compensation, or will the be able to fight for competitive compensation (extra cap room, draft picks, etc.)
3) The article says this goes back to Judge Doty's courtroom? Why wouldn't you bring a new judge into the equation. This wasn't a jury trial, thus Doty may have more of an agenda then a fresh judge.

Appeals court reinstates collusion case | ProFootballTalk

Edit: reformatted and added a question.
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Old 06-20-2014, 11:46 AM   #2
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Re: NFLPA collusion law suit overturned by appeal (salary cap)

As for 1 and 2-
I'm willing to bet the League's interest is in not having to disclose anything on the public record, under oath. The Redskins have the negotiating power at this point - so maybe they can get some just compensation for the whole thing. Draft picks, cap space, whatever. Personally - I'd rather have draft picks, I think it's a better long-term benefit provided the people making the picks are competent

As for #3...

I had the same question, however a buddy of mine has pointed out that Doty's ruling was simply on the timing and not the actual merits of either side's case. Therefore there's no reason to believe he has any favoritism towards one side or the other; or against one side or the other. He didn't comment on merits - simply on timing. I suppose the appeals court feels that simply overruling him on timing does not mean he's not capable of actually hearing the case?

Don't know... this stuff is so far over my head...

edit: I'm also not sure the Redskins have anything to do with it at this point? Maybe it's just the NFL PA? In that case my response to questions 1&2 is irrelevant and wrong.
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Old 06-20-2014, 11:56 AM   #3
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Re: NFLPA collusion law suit overturned by appeal (salary cap)

I think the NFLPA is the plantiff in this case, but on behalf of the Redskins, Cowboys, Raiders and whoever else... Broncos maybe. Either way, I will be disappointed if this goes to court, the NFL PA wins, and we get a financial settlement rather than a competitive one.
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Old 06-20-2014, 12:00 PM   #4
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Re: NFLPA collusion law suit overturned by appeal (salary cap)

I believe appeals courts often send cases back to the court with the original jurisdiction, but they give them additional guidance or limits to force the judge(s) to reevaluate the law.


This won't affect the Skins salary cap at all. This only allows the NFLPA to go forward with arguments and pushing for reopening CBA talks. The Skins are not going to side with the NFLPA on this.
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Old 06-20-2014, 12:59 PM   #5
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Re: NFLPA collusion law suit overturned by appeal (salary cap)

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I believe appeals courts often send cases back to the court with the original jurisdiction, but they give them additional guidance or limits to force the judge(s) to reevaluate the law.


This won't affect the Skins salary cap at all. This only allows the NFLPA to go forward with arguments and pushing for reopening CBA talks. The Skins are not going to side with the NFLPA on this.
I'm curious if this is your opinion or if this is something that's obvious/clear that I've missed.

If the Redskins are interested in being reimbursed for a penalty they saw to be unfit, why would they root against the NFL PA?

Is it because the NFL PA's sole interest is in invalidating the CBA and getting a better deal?

I ask because I'm curious because I don't know a lot about this.... I actually thought all of this was resolved and had no idea there was a ruling pending by the appeals court still out there...

I don't recall ever hearing the end goals being the CBA being revisited. If that's the end game then I may root against the NFL PA too - they're awful at negotiating and reopening the CBA will just cause more lockouts/problems for a second deal the inevitably screws over the PA anyways. That juice would not be worth the squeeze.
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Old 06-20-2014, 01:32 PM   #6
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Re: NFLPA collusion law suit overturned by appeal (salary cap)

Can someone refresh my memory. Were the sanctions leveled against the Redskins and Cowboys prior to signing the new CBA? I thought the CBA was signed, then the Redskins/Cowboys were told they were being punished. Wouldn't that alone invalidate the terms in the contract keeping the NFLPA from suing?
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Old 06-20-2014, 01:59 PM   #7
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Re: NFLPA collusion law suit overturned by appeal (salary cap)

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Originally Posted by tshile View Post
I'm curious if this is your opinion or if this is something that's obvious/clear that I've missed.

If the Redskins are interested in being reimbursed for a penalty they saw to be unfit, why would they root against the NFL PA?

Is it because the NFL PA's sole interest is in invalidating the CBA and getting a better deal?

I ask because I'm curious because I don't know a lot about this.... I actually thought all of this was resolved and had no idea there was a ruling pending by the appeals court still out there...

I don't recall ever hearing the end goals being the CBA being revisited. If that's the end game then I may root against the NFL PA too - they're awful at negotiating and reopening the CBA will just cause more lockouts/problems for a second deal the inevitably screws over the PA anyways. That juice would not be worth the squeeze.
If the NFLPA wins a lawsuit that says the NFL is guilty of collusion, it opens the flood gates to invalidating the NFL anti trust exemption. It's in no way beneficial to the Redskins (or Cowboys who also had a smaller penalty) to recoup a "trivial" amount of salary cap space and at the same time undercut the whole basis of the NFL's CBA structure. Mostly, this is my opinion, but it was hashed out in depth in the various salary cap penalty threads and articles that were published at the same time as the original rulings were made.

Put it this way: If you had a business, and due to unfair practices you lost $300 dollars. You would be right to go after the $300, but in order to get it, you would cost yourself $30,000. Would you do that for the sake of being right, or would you right it off, make a mental note, and when the time is right get the $300 back in other ways.

That's the ratio the Redskins are looking at with the salary cap, and siding with the NFLPA in a collusion case.
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Old 06-20-2014, 03:09 PM   #8
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Re: NFLPA collusion law suit overturned by appeal (salary cap)

Understood.

Though I thought when everything broke the whole threat from the Redskins was to 'go nuclear' - would that not be what this is? Or maybe the correct view is.... hey, it's over, time to move on.

The 'nuclear option' always seemed like a bluff to me anyways... due to exactly what you just said. While the penalty had a real impact on the team for 2 years, there's no long run impact to the owners of the teams...
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Old 06-20-2014, 03:11 PM   #9
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Re: NFLPA collusion law suit overturned by appeal (salary cap)

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Understood.

Though I thought when everything broke the whole threat from the Redskins was to 'go nuclear' - would that not be what this is? Or maybe the correct view is.... hey, it's over, time to move on.

The 'nuclear option' always seemed like a bluff to me anyways... due to exactly what you just said. While the penalty had a real impact on the team for 2 years, there's no long run impact to the owners of the teams...
Yeah, I don't think the Redskins ever talked about going nuclear, as far as I remember it was mostly the fans calling for that, and the media explaining what it would be.
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Old 06-21-2014, 01:06 AM   #10
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Re: NFLPA collusion law suit overturned by appeal (salary cap)

Just to be clear...both the redskins and cowboys are part of the defendant in thus case. Let that marinate. The two teams punished for not colluding are getting sued for collusion.
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Old 06-21-2014, 02:09 AM   #11
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Re: NFLPA collusion law suit overturned by appeal (salary cap)

There are times where I feel PFT explores the lawsuit/litigation angle on stories way to often, which I guess is to be expected given that Florio is a lawyer. However when these stories do end up breaking PFT does a good job of explaining them in layman terms.
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Old 06-21-2014, 02:35 AM   #12
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Re: NFLPA collusion law suit overturned by appeal (salary cap)

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Originally Posted by Daseal View Post
Today the 8th circuit of appeals overturned Judge Doty's decision that the NFLPA waited too long to file the collusion report and the new CBA nullified the collusion case.

I have a few questions on this result:
1) What are the chances this gets to the discovery phase forcing the NFL to release internal communication.
2) Will the teams only be able to go after financial compensation, or will the be able to fight for competitive compensation (extra cap room, draft picks, etc.)
3) The article says this goes back to Judge Doty's courtroom? Why wouldn't you bring a new judge into the equation. This wasn't a jury trial, thus Doty may have more of an agenda then a fresh judge.

Appeals court reinstates collusion case | ProFootballTalk

Edit: reformatted and added a question.
1. Probably still not likely. The NFL is likely to have several other grounds on which to make a Motion to Dismiss. I haven't read the decision, but I am somewhat surprised. The waiver seemed pretty solid ground - not sure what the 8th Circuit said was the problem with it. I am betting something along the lines of bad faith nullifying it.

2. I think everybody has already addressed this. It's the NFLPA v. the teams/league/owners. No individual team gains from the NFLPA prevailing.

3. Cases remanded generally go back to the judge whose decision was appealed unless for some reason (no longer on the bench, assigned to different docket, etc.) they are not able to do so.

In addition, and if I am recalling correctly, the NFLPA is trying to invalidate the NEW CBA by saying it never should have gone into effect b/c of the collusion. To do so, they are saying that the NFL violated the OLD CBA's terms for renegotiation. So, b/c they are attacking the validity of the NEW CBA through the OLD CBA, the matter goes to Doty because he retained jurisdiction of all the disputes of the OLD CBA. It was a major negotiation win for the NFL to get him off the case in future CBA disputes.

NFL sees familiar face in collusion case: Judge Doty - NFL.com
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Last edited by JoeRedskin; 06-21-2014 at 03:09 AM.
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Old 06-21-2014, 03:04 AM   #13
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Re: NFLPA collusion law suit overturned by appeal (salary cap)

Poked around but couldn't find the text of the case.

Did find this though:

Quote:
However, the appeals judges disagreed with Doty on this: Under a federal rule authorizing relief in exceptional cases where the party being sued disingenuously reached the settlement, the union should be allowed to argue the merit of its lawsuit despite the 2011 dismissal.

“The Association bears a heavy burden in attempting to convince the district court that the dismissal was fraudulently procured,” the judges wrote. “We hold only that the Association should be given the opportunity to meet this burden.”
NFLPA's Collusion Case Kept Alive by Eighth Circuit | Law.com

So, yeah, it's a bad faith argument by the NFLPA. I think the NFL is sugar coating it. Their claim it is "just procedural" is, from the above, BS. Sure, the NFLPA's burden of proof is high, but the NFL flat out lost its argument that the waiver barred this suit. Unless and until the NFL advances another legal argument that doesn't involve the waiver of claims, the NFLPA has the right to pursue discovery.

What this means procedurally is that, once the case is returned to the District Court - a process that takes anywhere from 7 -30 days normally, the NFL has 30 days to either file an Answer or make a new Motion to Dismiss ("MTD") on different grounds. The NFL won't file an Answer because that would permit the NFLPA to get discovery.

After they file a new MTD, a response will be filed (generally w/in 15 days), and, if Doty rules for the NFL, an appeal will be taken (in which case, I will be reposting this particular post in two years). If Doty rules against the MTD, the case proceeds to discovery. The NFL cannot appeal the denial of a MTD b/c the ruling would not finally dispose of the case. [i.e. - the NFLPA can appeal a decision to dismiss the case because the matter is over at that point. A denial of an MTD, however, allows the case to proceed to discovery, summary judgment or trial. The NFL cannot take an appeal of any of the intermediary adverse decisions until a final adverse verdict/ruling disposing of the case entirely is rendered against it at the trial court level.]
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Old 06-21-2014, 03:12 AM   #14
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Re: NFLPA collusion law suit overturned by appeal (salary cap)

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Originally Posted by Dirtbag59 View Post
There are times where I feel PFT explores the lawsuit/litigation angle on stories way to often, which I guess is to be expected given that Florio is a lawyer. However when these stories do end up breaking PFT does a good job of explaining them in layman terms.
Fine, I'll just leave it up them then.
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Old 06-21-2014, 08:21 AM   #15
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Love the explanation. Gracias
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