Earlier today, we learned that a Minnesota judge ruled that the NFLPA’s appeal on behalf of Tom Brady will be transferred to Manhattan, where the NFL first filed its own lawsuit. According to NFLPA outside counsel Jeffrey Kessler, the union doesn’t view that as a big deal.
“It really doesn’t matter to us where the case is,” Kessler told Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk. “What we finally have is a neutral forum. Before a neutral forum, we are very confident in our position.”
The NFLPA will have make some revisions when it re-files its appeal in New York, but “ostensibly we will be making the same arguments,” said Kessler, adding that the union is “very happy” to have Judge Richard M. Berman appointed to the case.
Let’s round up a couple more items related to the Brady situation, along with some other notes out of the AFC East….
- Kessler spoke yesterday to Tom Pelissero of USA Today, broadly addressing the NFLPA’s appeal on Brady’s behalf and explaining the case the union will be making in court. As Pelissero writes, the NFLPA’s appeal quotes Patriots owner Robert Kraft at length, and Kessler said of Kraft’s statement from earlier this week: “I’ve never more agreed with Robert Kraft in my life, about anything.”
- On the Dan Patrick Show today, NFLPA executive George Atallah said the NFLPA’s settlement offer involved Brady paying a fine instead of serving a suspension, and the NFL didn’t respond to that offer (Twitter link via Noah Coslov).
- Appearing at a “Business of Sports” breakfast in Buffalo on Thursday, Bills owner Terry Pegula said work on a new stadium for his team is “nothing urgent right now,” writes Mark Gaughan of The Buffalo News. Commissioner Roger Goodell and some NFL owners have said that a new stadium will eventually be a necessity in Western New York, but Pegula pointed to several upgrades made on Ralph Wilson Stadium in recent years, suggesting it would be “foolish” to pursue a new stadium right after renovating the current one.
- Speaking today to reporters, including James Walker of ESPN.com (via Twitter), Dolphins owner Stephen Ross praised the talent on Miami’s 2015 roster, and said he and head coach Joe Philbin are expecting a payoff this year. While Ross didn’t specifically address Philbin’s job status, there has been plenty of speculation that the head coach will be on the hot seat if the Fins don’t make the playoffs this season.