Ezekiel Elliott's request for stay is granted, now eligible to play Sunday
Elliott is eligible to play Sunday and will receive an expedited hearing on his request for an injunction
Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott will be able to play in Week 9 after all. The NFLPA's request for a brief administrative stay was granted by the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, allowing Elliott to play this Sunday before his request for an injunction pending the result of his full appeal is heard.
Elliott and the NFLPA filed the request for a stay asblocking the suspension until his appeal is heard.
It is important to note that what was granted by the court was Elliott's request for a brief administrative stay (as opposed to the actual injunction or a ruling in Elliott's favor wiping out the suspension entirely), which means that for now, he is only eligible to play this Sunday. A determination on whether he will be eligible to play during the next stage of his appeal will not be made until the court rules on his request for an injunction, which will likely happen next week.
Because of the uncertainty of this situation, our own Chris Towers explains that
If a three-judge panel grants an injunction, Elliott will be eligible to play while his appeal is heard by the Second Circuit and the suspension will once again be put off. If the court denies the injunction request, then he will have to serve the suspension even while appealing it in court.
Judge Katherine Polk Failla of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York ruled that the NFL's interest in obtaining the "benefit of its bargain" under the collective bargaining agreement outweighed the harm to Elliott in having to serve the suspension pending the result of his appeal, and the NFLPA appealed the ruling to the Second Circuit. Elliott seems unlikely to win the appeal in the Second Circuit, given the controlling precedent of the Tom Brady Deflategate case, but he may be able to win an injunction that allows him to play while the appeal is heard, citing the same irreparable harm argument that has worked for him in lower courts.
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