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Monday, August 03, 2015
Synopsis of Brady and NFLPA Legal Arguments

On Friday, Tom Brady and the NFLPA filed an Answer and Counterclaim in the New York federal court action initiated by the NFL to "confirm" the arbitration award rendered by Commissioner Goodell, which upheld Brady's four-game suspension arising out of Deflategate. This 54-page document lays out the NFLPA's legal arguments as to why Goodell's ruling should not be "confirmed" and, specifically, why it should be "vacated." It's a great piece of writing by Jeffrey Kessler and his team, and I believe it makes a compelling case to vacate Goodell's ruling, especially on the "no-notice" grounds, which have (in my view) constitutional dimensions similar to the Adrian Peterson and Ray Rice cases.

If you don't have access to PACER or just simply do not feel like slogging through a 54-page document, I have outlined the legal arguments raised by Brady and the NFLPA  in their Answer and Counterclaim (which is the "mirror image" of their petition to vacate recently filed in Minnesota). I've basically streamlined their document into a much shorter outline, with some of my own thoughts mixed in (particularly those which relate to what I see as "constitutional-level" violations, as well as a discussion of the applicable standards of review). Click here for the outline. Hope you enjoy it.


Goodell orders Troy Vincent to issue the discipline and send a letter to Brady notifying him of the same.

Brady:"You can't do that! Only the commissioner has the right to discipline players for conduct detrimental to the league! You cannot delegate that authority!"

Goodell: "Well, uh, I didn't delegate to anyone! I just... approved what Vincent suggested and then told him to write the letter."

Brady: "Yep, that's pretty much what delegation is! We'd like to make a motion that you recuse yourself, because the delegation issue is a central part of our case."

Goodell: "I will rule on your motion. [pauses] Your motion is denied."

Blogger Dave Garofalo -- 8/04/2015 2:40 PM  

Wondering if you can comment on the Steelworker Trilogy and whether there is any application (or rather, lack of application) to the Brady case?

Blogger SkelDaddy -- 8/04/2015 4:55 PM  

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