A federal appeals court on Thursday lifted a district court’s injunction that blocked a six-game ban for Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott.

Ezekiel Elliott Six-Game Suspension News

The 5th U.S. Circuit Court in New Orleans overturned a district court’s decision: the three-judge panel voted 2-1 to support the NFL’s argument.

The Cowboys have a bye this week.

However, the NFLPA is expected to re-file the case with the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York and seek a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction in order to keep Elliott playing, according to Gabe Feldman, director of the Tulane Sports Law Program.


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“At the time the NFLPA filed the complaint, it was possible the arbitrator could have issued a final decision that was favorable to Elliott. Elliott cannot show it was futile to wait for a final decision simply because he believed the arbitrator would issue an unfavorable ruling. As there was no final decision, Elliott had not yet exhausted the contracted-for remedies.”

District Court Judge Amos Mazzant III issued the preliminary injunction last month after concurring with the Players’ Association that 22-year-old Elliott did not receive a fair suspension appeal hearing from arbitrator Harold Henderson, who was appointed by commissioner Roger Goodell. 

Goodell suspended Elliott following a year-long probe into domestic violence allegations made by his former girlfriend, Tiffany Thompson regarding an incident that transpired in July 2016.

Given the six-game suspension, Elliott — a second-year running back who set the league record for rushing yards as a rookie — would not be eligible to return until Week 13, when the Cowboys host the Washington Redskins.

ARLINGTON, TX – DECEMBER 26: Ezekiel Elliott #21 of the Dallas Cowboys runs for a touchdown against the Detroit Lions during the first half at AT&T Stadium on December 26, 2016 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)

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