Ezekiel Elliott's Appeal is Sounding Really Familiar

Ezekiel Elliot

Star-TelegramDallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott missed practiced Monday because he is in New York preparing for a Tuesday hearing at the NFL offices to appeal a six-game suspension for violating the league’s personal conduct policy.

Elliott will be represented by his own lawyers, Frank Salzano and Scott Rosenblum as well as two bulldog attorneys from the NFL Players Association, Jeffrey Kessler and Heather McPhee, who both have had previous litigation success against NFL.

But there is no question winning the appeal will be an uphill battle. …

Elliott and his representatives asked for a “truly” independent arbitrator to hear the case, someone other than Harold Henderson, a former NFL management executive picked to oversee the appeal by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, according to a source.

That request was denied by Goodell, who under Article 46 of the league’s collective bargaining agreement is given the authority to hear the case himself or appoint a designee. …

Henderson denied a request to make [Tiffany] Thompson, Elliott’s accuser, available to testify at the appeal hearing. He also denied requests for notes or transcripts from the league’s meetings with Thompson, according to sources. …

Elliott’s team has promised a vigorous defense, while blasting the league for their “factual inaccuracies and erroneous conclusions.”

And[Jerry] Jones remains blindsided by the NFL’s decision to suspend his star player after promising there would be no discipline because he believes there was no evidence of domestic violence.

Jeffrey Kessler. An “independent arbitrator” hand picked by Roger Goodell. Goodell himself hovering over the proceedings, ready to rule on the appeal. Article 46. The right to face your accuser denied. Request to make the transcripts public denied. Writ of habeus corpus suspended. Factual inaccuracies. Erroneous conclusions. Text messages. A pissed off owner who thought Dear Leader Goodell was his friend. Where have we heard all this before?

This isn’t the Ezekiel Elliott hearing, it’s a sequel. A direct-to-video ripoff of the original. It’s Deflategate 2: When Roger Met Zeke. And like with most comedy sequels, it used up all the good ideas on the first one and this is just a rehash of all the best bits we’ve already seen. It’s the second Hangover movie, which was just a scene-for-scene remake, with Chow jumping naked out of an ice machine instead of a car trunk and the baby replaced by a monkey.

All of which means we know where the plot is headed. Facts don’t matter. Fairness is not a factor. Goodell gets what he wants because useful idiots like Jerry Jones were stupid enough to trust him and gave him unlimited power when it suited their purpose. Which was the destruction of the Patriots and the humiliation of Tom Brady. As long as we’re on the subject of bad sequels, Article 46 is Order 66:

… and Jerry Jones put it in the hands of a soulless, corrupt autocrat hellbent on destroying anyone who challenges his absolute rule and trusted him to use it wisely. And now that it’s biting him in the ass, I’m having a hard time feeling sorry for him.

Ezekiel Elliot is another story. If this 2 Deflategate 2 Furious  keeps playing out like the first movie, his reputation is destroyed for good. He’ll forever be remembered as a girlfriend beater. And if he ever gets invited to a Super Bowl in his hometown he’ll get booed mercilessly. There’ll probably be a terrible courtroom sketch. But in the end, evil will prevail, thanks to men like his boss. And the only way he’ll be able to triumph is do what the star of the original did. Unfortunately I don’t see a Super Bowl MVP coming at the end of this one. But at least sales of Goodell Clown shirts will go up in Dallas. Buy a bunch.

Goodell is a clown