The NFL Players’ Union has just announced that it filed an appeal on behalf of Ray Rice to challenge the player’s indefinite suspension.
According to CNN, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell initially suspended the Baltimore Ravens running back for two games without pay and fined Rice the equivalent of another game’s pay. Once the disturbing video footage of Rice punching his now- wife in the face became public, Goodell then made Rice’s punishment worse by suspending him indefinitely.
The National Football League is citing double jeopardy.
“Under governing labor law, an employee cannot be punished twice for the same action when all of the relevant facts were available to the employer at the time of the first punishment.”
The union is now asking for a third party to hear facts about the appeal.
“The NFLPA appeal is based on supporting facts that reveal a lack of a fair and impartial process, including the role of the office of the Commissioner of the NFL,” the union said in a written statement. “We have asked that a neutral and jointly selected arbitrator hear this case as the Commissioner and his staff will be essential witnesses in the proceeding and thus cannot serve as impartial arbitrators.”
Whether the 27 year old is reinstated back into the NFL this season–or ever–is still up in the air. However, this is the first step that needs to be taken in order for him to even have a chance.