Ezekiel Elliott will not undergo six game suspension


Brad Erwin

Ezekiel Elliott enters the courtroom in Sherman, TX.

Brad Erwin, Staff Writer

Cowboy’s star running back Ezekiel Elliott was granted temporary restraining order. He will not have to undergo the six game suspension.

Ezekiel Elliott was serving a 6 game suspension for violating a NFL policy. According to TMZ “The league says the investigation found ‘substantial and persuasive evidence’ that Zeke engaged in physical violence against the accuser.” 

U.S. Judge Amos Mazzant ruled on Friday Sept. 8 that the NFL arbitration rule was unfair. This will likely mean Ezekiel Elliott will play the entire 2017 NFL season.

Elliott’s court hearing began on Sept. 5 in Sherman Texas. Elliott already was suspended for week one. Judge Amos Mazzant requested that Elliott be allowed to participate in week one while he deliberated on the decision.

During the hearing the NFLPA aruged that the NFL arbitration process had led an investigation that looked to wreck a person’s career without “credible evidence”. The NFLPA stated, during the collective bargaining agreement, they should have pushed for a different arbitration system, but claimed that they should not have to argue to be treated fairly.

The NFL argued arbitration was still in process and a verdict had not been reached therefore the court intervening was not legally permissible. The NFL hammered the point that a player can not say they want to go to arbitration and then when they do not like how it is going decide to go to court.

Judge Amos Mazzant explained to the NFL that “The issue is whether or not the arbitration was fair.” Thus the NFLPA argued Ezekiel Elliott was not charged or convicted in Ohio. The NFLPA also explained the only person that interviewed Tiffany Thompson, the accuser, was Kia Roberts, an NFL investigator. Roberts came to the conclusion that Ezekiel Elliott should not be suspended, which was never put in the 168 page report by the NFL.

The NFLPA also underlined that their requests to have Tiffany Thompson testify were not granted therefore they never got a chance to cross examine her. When the judge asked about the NFLs policy about victims testifying the NFL could not answer.

During the trail the NFLPA lined out an explanation that Lisa Friel, a New York Attorney, tried to suppress the findings of Kia Roberts. NFLPA said Lisa Friel underwent “eight minutes of testimony and changed her story five to six times.” They said, “You’ll be scratching your head saying, what?”

In their final arguments, the NFLPA outlined time in the NFL is limited and that All Pro and Superbowl accolades are priceless. This could be the year the Dallas Cowboys win the Superbowl if they have Ezekiel Elliott and to suspend him on Tiffany Thompson’s unreliable testimony is egregious. Also the lack of Kia Robert’s interview and findings in the 168 page report and the refusal to have Tiffany Thompson testify were definitive proof that the NFL was trying to suppress evidence.

The NFLs response was Kia Roberts expressed concern with Tiffany Thompson and Ezekiel Elliott which were lined out in a 99 page memo. Roberts also claimed during the interview with Tiffany Thompson she put all of Thompson’s testimony into the report, but she actually summarized all of Thompson’s statements.

NFL attorneys explained that Kia Roberts interviewed Elliott before she had texts, photos, and metadata. They also said Elliott per the texts, photos, and metadata was not truthful to police or to Kia Roberts.

Judge Amos Mazzant then asked, “Was Mrs. Roberts the only one to interview Mrs. Thompson?” The NFL responded with “yes.” the judge stated that Roberts was a former prosecutor and she would have done what she believed was right.

Typically in court, victim’s do not come forward in order to be protected from harassment. The NFL closed with employees usually do not have the right to court in arbitrations and that it is usually done through the union. Judge Amos Mazzant rendered at 5:30 p.m on September 15. that the temporary restraining order would be granted to Ezekiel Elliott.

Ezekiel Elliott ended week one with 24 rush attempts, 140 rush yards, 5 targets, 5 receptions, and 36 receiving yards. Leading the Cowboys to a win against the New York Giants that ended in the score 19-3.