Ezekiel Elliott’s on-again-off-again suspension is currently off again. That puts us past week 9 in the ongoing legal battle for him to serve a 6-game suspension for the domestic violence accusations against him. If the suspension began next week he would serve the suspension between weeks 10 and 15, returning for two final games.
This is a reminder, as we hurtle toward December with no resolution, that the initial letter from Roger Goodell notifying Elliott of the suspension said, “You are hereby suspended without pay for six (6) regular season games, subject to appeal.”
We are now three weeks away from a scenario where Elliott could begin serving a suspension, then return for the playoffs if Dallas can make them, and then finish out the suspension at the start of next season.
An NFL spokesman, however, is claiming that Elliott can be suspended for the playoffs depending on when a final decision comes down.
That would almost certainly just be another litigated point of contention, leading to another round of court appearances. Even though the NFL has been given wide latitude in the discipline process, I’m not sure a court would find that they can actually change the clear language of suspension terms after the fact. The letter could have just said games. It was more specific. That’s the kind of thing that generally gets held against the person who wrote the specific term when they argue they meant something else.