The NFL Players Association recently filed to the NFL what the union, Ezekiel Elliott and his representatives hope is a final response that answers any lingering questions remaining in the league’s year-long investigation into the Dallas Cowboys‘ star running back, multiple sources with direct knowledge of the investigation tell NFL.com.
The investigatory part of the process is nearing completion, sources say, and the league has shared its findings with the NFLPA, Elliott and his representatives. It remains unclear whether Elliott will be suspended or otherwise disciplined. The report the NFL sent to the NFLPA made no recommendation one way or another on potential discipline, according to two people who have seen it.
The NFL launched its investigation soon after a woman claiming to be Elliott’s ex-girlfriend filed a police report in Columbus, Ohio, on July 22, 2016 — one year to the day before Elliott is scheduled to report to his second Cowboys training camp Saturday — alleging Elliott assaulted her over several days last July.
Elliott was never arrested and the Columbus City Attorney’s Office declined to file charges, citing conflicting and inconsistent information. Elliott spoke to league investigators last fall and has expressed frustration the NFL’s probe hasn’t concluded, as have his attorney and Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. But the Ohio allegation wasn’t the only matter investigators looked into.
The same woman called police on Elliott in Feb. 2016 in Florida, where the former Ohio State star was training for the NFL draft, alleging she suffered shoulder pain when Elliott pushed her up against a wall. In March 2017, Elliott was seen in videos and photos pulling down a woman’s shirt and exposing her breast on the roof of a Dallas bar during an early St. Patrick’s Day parade. And just this past Sunday night, Elliott’s name surfaced in media reports in connection with an assault allegation at a Dallas bar.
Dallas police announced Wednesday they were suspending their investigation into that matter and have not named any suspect or mentioned Elliott. The incident from Sunday is not part of the NFL’s investigation into the prior assault allegations, a source with knowledge of the investigation said, and would not factor into any potential discipline stemming from this current probe.
Jones told reporters Tuesday he’d spoken with Elliott about the most recent issue and “just learning that your every move will be scrutinized and how in this day and time it will be looked at from many vantage points.”
A significant step in resolving the NFL’s investigation came in late May, when the NFLPA complied with a longstanding request to turn over phone records and other documents that league investigators had been seeking. The NFL generally tries to close these cases before the calendar gets too close to the start of the regular season in September out of fairness to clubs. Any discipline would be subject to appeal by Elliott.
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