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NFL Players Say They’ll Appeal Rejection of Revenue Suit

National Football League players whose bid to reopen a 2011 lawsuit settlement over revenue was rejected by a federal judge in December told the court today they plan to appeal that decision.

The National Football League Players Association had claimed the league hid a $123 million-a-club salary cap for the 2010 season. The players sought $3 billion in damages, saying owners violated an earlier agreement requiring uncapped salaries that season.

U.S. District Judge David S. Doty in Minneapolis on Dec. 31 rejected the claim, finding that the earlier agreement, reached in 2006, had expired and the players had waived such claims through their 2011 collective-bargaining agreement. The 2011 accord, settling a labor dispute, included a stipulation of dismissal of any claims, pending or not, Doty said.

Because the stipulation of dismissal was executed after the 2006 agreement expired, “the court is without jurisdiction to enforce” it, Doty said in the ruling. “The NFLPA released the claims it attempts to assert in the underlying action.”

The players said today in a court filing that they would appeal the decision to the U.S. Court of Appeals.

The case is White v. National Football League, 92-cv-00906, U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota (Minneapolis).

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