High School Football Scoreboard

State court suit over ‘no-call’ can proceed against NFL

A referee watches as Tommylee Lewis #11 of the New Orleans Saints drops a pass broken up by Nickell Robey-Coleman #23 of the Los Angeles Rams during the fourth quarter in the NFC Championship game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on January 20, 2019 in New Orleans, Louisiana.

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — A Louisiana judge ruled Thursday that a damage lawsuit can continue against the NFL over the playoff “no-call” that helped the Los Angeles Rams beat the New Orleans Saints and advance to the 2019 Super Bowl.

State Civil District Court Judge Nicole Sheppard also ruled that attorney Antonio “Tony” LeMon can request documents and ask questions of NFL officials. LeMon said that means he will be able to question Commissioner Roger Goodell and three game officials in depositions about the lack of a penalty — pass interference or roughness — against Rams cornerback Nickell Robey-Coleman for his helmet-to-helmet hit on receiver Tommylee Lewis well before a pass arrived. The play came during a crucial point in January’s NFC title game.

Attorneys representing the NFL in the case didn’t immediately respond to emailed requests for comment. LeMon said he was informed Thursday that NFL attorneys, whose bid to stop the suit was rejected, would seek relief at a state appeal court.

LeMon says money isn’t the object of the February suit he and three others filed, which alleges fraud by NFL officials. It seeks only $75,000, which LeMon said would go to charity.

“The purpose of the lawsuit is not to get some minuscule amount of money. They won’t even notice that,” LeMon said. “It’s to get at the truth.”

Other suits dealing with the blown call have wound up in federal court, where they have failed. They included one long-shot effort to have the game or a crucial part of it played over before the Rams met the New England Patriots in the Super Bowl, which the Patriots won.

LeMon said that by seeking $75,000 in damages, he keeps the suit below a threshold that could result in it begin transferred to federal court, as other suits have been.

“I feel that their record in the federal courts is way too good,” he said. He also wants the case tried under Louisiana law and jurisprudence, he said.

LeMon said he wants what he describes as a “mountain” of evidence in the case. He said he wants to know, among other things, whether the officials involved in the play were disciplined for not throwing a flag. “I want their personnel files. I want their gradings,” he said. “I want their notes from the game.”

A flag on the play would have meant a first down for the Saints, who could have run down the clock and won the game with a field goal. Instead, the Saints kicked a go-ahead field goal with 1:41 left. The Rams came back to tie with a field goal before winning in overtime.

In April, NFL owners voted to next season allow pass interference calls to be challenged by coaches and reviewed on replay by officials.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

4 comments

  • steve

    Now, even the results in sporting events that some people don’t like can wind up in court! The rampant litigation epidemic that has been created by liberals is destroying much of what makes life in America so special.

      • steve

        The point is that those people that whine and snivel about outcomes will go to whatever lengths necessary in an attempt to change that outcome. An example of that mindset are those leftists that were screaming into the sky when Trump got elected, and to this day they still think Hillary got robbed.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.