The Dallas Cowboys got some good news for the 2017 NFL season, but it likely won’t last. A federal judge in Texas has ruled that running back Ezekiel Elliott will have a restraining order against the NFL prohibiting them from suspending him until he can go before a federal judge with his case. This likely means that Elliott will be able to play for the entire season, much like Tom Brady did when a district judge ruled in his favor as well during Deflategate.

The judge rules on Ezekiel Elliott

The NFLPA made their case that the NFL was set out to suspend Ezekiel Elliott whether there was cause or not to make an example of him.

Two problems went against the NFL in this case. The first surrounded the alleged domestic abuse victim, who the NFLPA and their attorneys were not allowed to speak to her to gather information about the case. The second was the fact that the NFL representative who interviewed the alleged victim did not believe that a suspension was warranted after her investigation and was therefore not invited to speak at the hearing.

Roger Goodell has suspended Ezekiel Elliott for six games and an arbitrator assigned by Goodell named Harold Henderson upheld the suspension. "The question before the Court is merely whether Elliott received a fundamentally fair hearing before the arbitrator. The answer is he did not," federal Judge Amos Mazzant ruled. He continued by saying “"the NFL's breach of the [collective bargaining agreement] is only compounded by Henderson's breach of the CBA.” He said that the NFLPA was denied procedural requirements for the hearing.

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As expected, the NFL disagreed with the decision of the courts.

Elliott’s possible future

Ezekiel Elliott was already cleared to play in the opening game of the 2017 NFL season against the New York Giants. It might have just been better to serve the suspension out and then return for the last half of the season to help the Dallas Cowboys on their playoff push. If the suspension takes place, which it likely will, it could come at the start of next season or – in the worst-case scenario – at the end of this season when the Cowboys need him the most.

However, while that is where Ezekiel Elliott stands when it comes to his returning, there are much more dire issues at hand. The NFLPA has made it clear that they will not agree to a new deal with the NFL under the current agreement. Roger Goodell has entirely too much power, as evident by the Ezekiel Elliott suspension, the Tom Brady suspension, and the New Orleans Saints bountygate ordeal, all of which the NFLPA feels he overstepped his bounds. If there is not an arbitrator separate from the NFL, there will be a strike or lockout in the next few years.