Will NFL Players Begin Wearing Tech on Uniforms?

The National Football League Players Association (NFLPA) stated that its newly unveiled business accelerator has entered into an agreement with Whoop Inc., which will provide players with fitness tracking devices that they can wear. Notably, the deals allows players to retain ownership of the data they collect.

As background, OneTeam Collective, a business incubator launched by the players union in December to help emerging sports-related companies grow by leveraging the licensing rights and advice of pro athletes. According to the NFLPA, the deal ensures …

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Professional Sports Unions Blast Illinois Workers’ Compensation Proposal

As discussed previously on the Sports and Entertainment Law Insider last month, Illinois has introduced a Senate Bill to limit the age that an injured Illinois professional athlete can collect workers’ compensation benefits to the age of 35. Since that time, professional sports unions have come out strongly in opposition to the measure, including the National Football League’s Player Association (NFLPA) and the Major League Soccer Player’s Union.

The NFLPA, after previously warning that the proposed measure could result in free agents being cautioned against …

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NFL Players Union Argues No Breach of Collective Bargaining Agreement on Player’s 10-Game Drug Suspension

Lane Johnson, Philadelphia Eagles right tackle, was hit with a 10-game drug suspension last season for the alleged use of performance enhancing drugs. In response, Johnson filed suit last month against the NFL Players Association, arguing that the Union’s inactions caused his suspension. Specifically, Johnson sued the NFL and the Players Union for allegedly failing to follow the collective bargaining agreement and the collectively bargained NFL policy on performance-enhancing substances in punishing him with a 10-game suspension.

After raising jurisdictional issues and determining that …

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Packers’ Defensive Lineman Drops Suit Flagging NFL, NFLPA for ‘Illegal Formation’

A Green Bay Packers defensive lineman has dropped a lawsuit against the NFL and NFL Players Association on Monday, December 19, 2016. Mike Pennel, the third-year nose tackle from CSU-Pueblo, was suspended for violating the NFL’s substance-abuse policy. Pennel intended to appeal the league’s finding, contained in a November 8 letter, at a hearing set for December 6. Before that hearing took place, however, Pennel filed suit in the Federal Northern District Court of Ohio on November 29.

The substance of Pennel’s argument focused not …

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Start ‘Em Up: NFLPA Launches Business Accelerator

On December 6, 2016, the National Football League Players Association launched the OneTeam Collective, a business incubator that will help drive innovative sports-related companies’ growth. This effort was initiated alongside six other founding partners: Harvard Innovation Lab, Intel, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, LeadDog Marketing Group, Madrona Venture Group, and the Sports Innovation Lab.

OneTeam will acquire equity stakes in new sports-related startups in exchange for the licensing and content rights of NFL players. Generally, companies like Nike or EA Sports must shell out a …

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Teams Violating NFL Concussion Protocol Face Harsher Fines

The National Football League (NFL) and the NFL Players Association (NFLPA) have agreed to a new concussion protocol. On Monday, July 25, 2016, the NFL released a new Game Day Concussion Protocol policy. New policies focus on the investigation of incidents and punishment of teams that are deemed to be in violation of the protocol.

The NFL has recently faced heavy criticism regarding its response to the dangers of head trauma. The claims focus on the league’s slow response to addressing injuries from repeated head …

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New England Patriots Enter the Fray in Brady and the NFLPA’s Petition to Rehear Deflategate Case

On May 25, 2016, the New England Patriots officially joined Tom Brady’s battle to have the Second Circuit’s decision to reinstate Brady’s four-game suspension reheard. In a rare and surprising move by a team to go against the league in a player dispute, the Patriots filed a motion for leave to file a brief in support of Brady and the NFLPA. This motion stems from a recent Second Circuit decision to overturn the NFL superstar’s voided suspension and the NFLPA’s petition to have a rehearing

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NFLPA Officially Files Petition for Rehearing in Brady Case

Unhappy with the Second Circuit’s decision in April to uphold the four game suspension handed down to star quarterback Tom Brady of the New England Patriots for his role in the 2014 Deflategate scandal, the National Football League Players’ Association filed a petition for rehearing en banc with the Second Circuit on Monday, May 23, 2016. The filing comes as no surprise to most, and follows the appellate court’s 2-1 decision to overturn a New York federal judge’s ruling that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell overstepped …

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Second Circuit Overturns Brady Ruling, Reinstates QB’s Suspension

On Monday, April 25, 2016, the Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit voted two-to-one to overturn NFL superstar Tom Brady’s voided 2015 suspension. Brady, who has quarterbacked the league-dominating New England Patriots to four Super Bowl wins this century, was originally handed a four game suspension prior to the start of last year’s football season for his role in the intentional deflation of game balls during the 2014 AFC Championship game against the Indianapolis Colts. Brady and the NFL Players Association appealed the suspension, …

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Arbitrator Upholds NFL Commissioner’s Personal Conduct Policy

On Monday, April 11, 2016, arbitrator Jonathan Marks upheld NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell’s personal conduct policy that allows him to place players charged with a violent crime on paid leave.

In December 2014, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell handed down a personal conduct policy that allowed him to place players that were charged with a crime, such as sexual assault, on an exempt list. The players placed on this list were given paid leave, however, they were unable to play or practice with their team.

In …

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