Although claims from Vikings defensive tackles Pat and Kevin Williams' side were denied by U.S. District Judge Paul Magnuson on Friday, there is still reason for confidence from Vikings fans.
Magnuson remanded two claims made by Williams' to Minnesota State Court. After this story broke, many thought this was the end of the fight for the two Pro Bowl defensive tackles.
The Williams', along with three Saints players, were suspended four games last season for testing positive for the banned diuretic Bumetanide, which is a drug in the product called StarCaps. StarCaps is used in weight loss, but the diuretic can be used as a masker for steroids.
However, the two defensive tackles were granted a restraining order against the NFL and were allowed to play the rest of the season.
The Williams' attorney, Peter Ginsberg, believes this move is a positive step for his clients.
“This gives my clients a terrific case and Judge Magnuson kept alive the heart of our case which is that the NFL improperly violated Kevin and Pat’s privacy rights and due process in administering these suspensions,” Ginsberg said.
“We brought this case in state court because we believed the state courts in Minnesota had the most interest in protecting its employees rights. Judge Magnusson agrees and now it’s back to state court, which is the forum that the NFL tried to run away from.”
Ginsberg also touched on the fact that the NFL wasn't fully aware of Minnesota's employee rights and the state court will protect these rights.
“The Minnesota legislature is very concerned about employer’s intruding on the privacy rights of their employees,” Ginsberg said.
“The NFL admitted during discovery that it didn’t know or care what Minnesota state law calls for. This lawsuit in part is making the NFL aware and concerned about how it should be protecting Minnesota employees.”
Along with this information Mike Florio of Profootballtalk.com, who has practiced law for almost 18 years, released a very informative article that summarized why this might work out for the Williams'.
In Florio's article, he talks about a claim made under the Minnesota Drug and Alcohol Testing in the Workplace Act. Judge Magnuson touched on this, saying the law "prohibits employers from imposing discipline based on a single positive test."
Well, as Florio said, the Williams tested positive only once for the banned diuretic and the NFL can enforce a suspension upon the first positive test.
This law also gives the right to Minnesota employees to explain why they tested positive.
While many thought this was an upper-cut to the Williams' case, this could work out and the two starting defensive tackles could indeed be starting in all 16 games this season. Time will tell, so make sure to check back.