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Minnesota Vikings: Williams' Case Moved Back To State Court

DETROIT - DECEMBER 07:  (L-R) Kevin Williams #93 and Pat Williams #94 of the Minnesota Vikings watch from the sidelines during the NFL game against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field on December 7, 2008 in Detroit, Michigan.  The Vikings defeated the Lions 20-16. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Carrie DaklinCorrespondent IMay 23, 2009

Apparently no one wants the political hot-potato of deciding whether Pat and Kevin Williams will be starting for the Minnesota Vikings come September. If  they do not start they may be benched for the first four games of the season, which is a suspension that has been in litigation since last Fall.

Federal Judge, Paul A. Magnuson, has dismissed all but two claims of the Williams': a claim involving how and when Minnesota employers can require their employees to submit to drug testing, and a claim regarding whether Minnesota employer's can discipline an employee for using a non-legal substance after work hours.

That lawsuit had been originally filed in State court.

However, under Federal Diversity, which allows a suit to be moved to Federal Court when a party to the lawsuit resides in another state, the case was moved into the U.S. District Court at the request of the NFL. Now, it will be sent back to Hennepin County.

While the claims will once again wind their way through the slow-churning court system, it is unclear what the state of the suspensions are.

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello is quoted in the Minneapolis Star Tribune as saying, "We are pleased that after a careful review of the record the court has upheld the suspensions of the players in this case.The decision strongly supports the NFL's stance on performance enhancing substances that protects the health and safety of NFL players and the integrity of our game".

A review on Vikings.com and other news sources, however, does not confirm that the suspensions have been upheld. Only that the Williams's case has been remanded.

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