Law firm trying to recruit players to intervene in antitrust lawsuit

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Last month, the law firm of Barnes & Thornburg hoped to represent a group of players who wanted to intervene in the Tom Brady antitrust lawsuit.  Those hopes were dashed by a conflict of interest that the NFL declined to waive.

But the effort to round up players who would intervene in the antitrust action continues.

Per a source with knowledge of the situation, the Cafferty Faucher firm, with offices in Philadelphia, Chicago, and Ann Arbor, has been attempting to recruit players to intervene in the pending action.  Cafferty Faucer is the firm that the Associated Press erroneously identified last month as the firm that was unable to proceed due to a conflict of interest.

Per the source, a Cafferty Faucher lawyer has called at least one NFL agent in the hopes of representing one or more of the agent’s clients.  The lawyer did not respond to an e-mail from PFT providing an opportunity to respond, to dispute the contention, and/or to clarify the situation.

It remains to be seen whether any players will attempt to intervene in the pending litigation.  The fact that no player has publicly voiced concern regarding the handling of the lawsuit suggests that, to date, no other players are willing to complicate an already complex situation in a manner that could give the owners some extra leverage.

30 responses to “Law firm trying to recruit players to intervene in antitrust lawsuit

  1. If I were a player, I would be deeply concerned about what actions the owners might take if they lose the pending lawsuits. I would not trust my career, future employment and pay rate to someone else’s attorneys who may or may not have my best interests at heart. The only way I could possibly trust that scenario is, if in fact, I am still counting on the de=certified union to cover my butt for me. I would, in the present case, exercise my rights as an independent employee to demand representation at the plaintiff table. Would be foolish on my part to do otherwise.

  2. That’s all we need… more $@!$#@ lawyers to complicate and suck money out of this whole mess.

    Collective bargaining?

    Nah, collective greed.

  3. Greedy lawyers and greedy players.

    The players entrusted their future earnings, benefits, and careers to a lifelong ambulance chaser. Now even more ambulance chasers want even more players to sign on board. The players have to be the dumbest group of “bargaining” employees ever.
    The owners are just sitting back saying “by the time we drag this out and these dummies start missing paychecks, and attorney bills start arriving in the players mailboxes, they will need even more attorneys……..Bankruptcy attorneys

  4. Sad…Lawyers are destorying the NFL and fast. Good lawyering has its place, but ask anyone who makes deals for a living what lawyers do to the process.

    Until business people step up and work on a deal, the lockout is on. Both sides need to tell the lawyers to “sit down, shut up”!

  5. Once the court finds the players’ union was legally decertified, the owners will cave, the union will be recertified, and live will go on.

    I can almost taste the 12 dollar stadium beer now.

  6. The law firm is moving up in stature. Matter of fact, if you call them up these days and ask for “Mr. Fo-CHUR”, instead of “Mr. Fo-SHAY”, they don’t even bother to talk to you.

  7. It took me a second to figure out that this post was not about Ben Jarvis Green Ellis. “Why would BJGE be recruiting other players to intervene?”

  8. It seems foolish to intervene at this point. Players should be discussing this with Demaurice smith behind closed doors. Only if they are thoroughly rebuffed should they consider this course of action (in which case if would be the NFLPA*’s fault.

  9. Great. More attorneys trying to get involved, that will solve everything, more lawyers and litigation.

  10. If an agent isn’t an attorney himself, can the firm contact him directly? Or is it not solicitation because they’re not contacting the prospective clients directly? If they contacted any players directly, wouldn’t that be an ethical violation?

  11. My understanding is that for a law suit to be classified as a class action, the court must certify the suit as a class action. I don’t think that the court has certified the Manning, Brady, etc. suit as a class action.

    If I am right, the only players with a lawyer in this mess are the named plaintiffs. All of the other players are drifting without legal representation to protect their interest.

    D. Smith is certainly not looking out for the average player, he is only interested in his own agenda.

  12. To: willycents

    A court has already ruled that additional litigants can not be added to the existing case, meaning additional players can’t request representation. So, players not included in the original case must rely on the outcome of this case to determine thier particular “best interest”. Perhaps that ruling opens up the option for a future appeal.


  14. LAWYERS!!!!! I tell ya, they’re gonna end up ruining pro foootball. When they do, I hope it’s well documented for the record so other sports can avoid these sharks like the plague!

  15. Mike,

    Is their anything that prevents a group of ‘disgruntled’ players from approaching the league to form a CBA? Is there anything that prevents the NFL from approaching players about that same idea?

    I don’t think it will happen, but I am curious if it could happen.

  16. The purpose of a third party trying to get involved would suggest that, as most here have already said, the NFLPA* and De Smith are pursuing a specific agenda that is not in line with what would benefit most players. Therefore, that group of players would not try to join the lawsuit in progress. It remains to be seen what the lawsuit would look like, but the end goal would be to get a spot at the negotiating table. Essentially, they’re pitting themselves against the NFL and the NFLPA*.

  17. I know this comment is going to get a lot of thumbs downs, but oh well…here’s the uncomfortable truth: we either love democracy or we don’t. I suspect most if not nearly all the people posting on this board would say they love America and our democratic way of life. Well…here’s the rub: it’s ugly at times. It’s complicated and jarring. But..everyone MUST have recourse to the law. If they do not…it is no longer a democracy.

    Yes, lawyers are often spurred by greed. But they are still a vital part of our way of life, and annoying and slimy as they are. Without them, we are no different than any third world sh*thole that CALLS itself a democracy while deny its citizens access to the law.

    As painful as this process is…it is also wonderful. The system, for all it’s warts, is working. And, at some point, it WILL be resolved.

    God Bless America!

  18. I hate lawyers (said the lawyer).


    Pity SCOTUS takes that away a week at a time. That’s what you get with Conservative Courts … no redress. The class action law suit is dead, among others. We keeping putting reactionary, interfering conservatives on the bench and legal recourse will be but a memory. It almost is now.

  19. jimmysee says: May 7, 2011 10:40 PM

    I thought that lawyers actively recruiting clients for litigation, particularly class action litigation was illegal.

    The law firm of Milberg Weiss in San Diego, who was king of the securities class actions, got into trouble for that a few years ago.

    At least one of their partners went to jail.


    Milberg Weiss was not just recruiting clients, they were paying people to file lawsuits against publicly traded companies. And that is illegal.

    While there are many restrictions, lawyers can advertise for clients.

  20. Nothing good will come of the lock-out or the lawsuit. Both sides have to put aside stupidity and look to reason with each other in a calm fashion. Here’s one facet:

    16 regular season games + 4 pre-season games = 20 games total

    18 regular season games + 2 pre-season games = 20 games total

    You’re still playing the same # of games. Just 2 less exhibition & 2 more that count. DUH!!

  21. To follow up on what jimmysee and nflfan101 were saying:

    Generally speaking (some states could be different, but most follow the same/similar rules), lawyers can advertise, but they can’t solicit potential clients in real time (in person, on the phone, or through electronic means) and can only advertise through tv/radio/print ads or through direct mail but it has to identify it as advertising material. They can only solicit directly if the person is also a lawyer, or is a family member, friend, etc.

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