Was Ezekiel Elliott’s suspension a ‘league-wide conspiracy?’
If the NFL is consistent with anything, it is running murky investigations. Ezekiel Elliott was suspended six games for his alleged role in a domestic violence assault against his ex-girlfriend. Elliott’s appeal hearing quickly followed and concluded Thursday. And we are just getting started.
Late Thursday Clarence Hill of The Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported that the NFL’s lead investigator, Kia Roberts, testified that she had recommended no suspension after thoroughly interviewing the alleged victim, Tiffany Thompson. Roberts believed Thompson lacked credibility, yet her recommendation was not included in the original investigation report.
In the aftermath of this bombshell, the NFLPA’s legal team led by Jeffrey Kessler and Heather McPhee, filed a request for a temporary restraining order to a Texas district court. The 30-page filing alleges that Elliott is part of a “league-wide conspiracy” and suggests that Roberts was intentionally kept of a room of league decision makers.
The immediacy of this filing suggests that the NFLPA is very confident in its case, and is ready to supersede the league even as appeals officer Harold Henderson is thought to quickly issue a decision.
There is also a strong irreparable harm argument. Elliott’s season begins in less than a week and while a drawn out court battle could lead to the suspension getting reversed, there is no way replicate the lost games.
Elliott’s case has officially become vicious, and if the suspension was truly rooted in conspiracy we’ll see who still has a job in the league office.