Ezekiel Elliott’s battle with the NFL won’t go away quickly or easily.
A Texas district court judge granted a temporary restraining order and a preliminary injunction, according to Lindsay Jones of USA Today and other reports. That means Elliott, the Dallas Cowboys star running back who was suspended six games for an incident involving alleged domestic violence, can continue to play as the case is decided in the courts and might play the entire season.
Friday’s decision stated, “Elliott did not receive a fundamentally fair hearing, necessitating the Court grant the request for preliminary injunction,” according to Drew Davison of the Fort Worth Star Telegram.
Kate Hairopoulos of the Dallas Morning News, who wrote Elliott is likely to play the whole 2017 season after Friday’s decision, said the judge ruled that arbitrator Harold Henderson’s decision to not allow commissioner Roger Goodell or Elliott’s accuser Tiffany Thompson to testify at Elliott’s appeal hearing meant Elliott was denied a fair hearing.
Elliott’s Instagram account had this reaction after the Texas judge’s ruling:
In similar circumstances, New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady played the entire 2015 season as his deflate-gate case was argued in various courts, though he eventually served a four-game suspension to start the 2016 season.
If Elliott can play for all or most of this season, it’s obviously huge news for the Cowboys. Elliott led the NFL in rushing last season. The NFL suspended him six games after investigating a domestic violence accusation. Elliott was not charged in that case. Elliott appealed the NFL’s ruling, and earlier this week Henderson ruled the suspension would stand, but the NFL said Elliott could play in Week 1.