Appeal hearing by NFL's Adrian Peterson ends

Thu Dec 4, 2014 5:44pm EST
 
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(Reuters) - The two-day appeal hearing of Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson's suspension ended on Thursday, with a decision expected in about a week.

Peterson, 29, was suspended by National Football League Commissioner Roger Goodell on Nov. 18 until at least April 15 for beating his 4-year-old son with a tree branch.

But the 2012 NFL most valuable player, who has played in only one game this year, was successful in lobbying for an arbitrator to hear his case for reinstatement.

The arbitrator was Harold Henderson, a former NFL executive vice president of labor relations who has heard 87 appeals since 2008 involving personal conduct and drug issues.

There were several pieces to Peterson's argument against Goodell's punishment, among them that his offense occurred in May but the league's stiffened sanctions against domestic violence were announced in September.

Faced with mounting criticism over the widely held perception that the NFL was soft on its players who committed domestic violence, Goodell has promised to roll out an entirely new platform on the issue by the Super Bowl on Feb. 1.

The only witness reportedly at the New York hearing on Thursday was NFL executive Troy Vincent, who could not attend its first day, Tuesday, because he was testifying in Washington, D.C., before Congress on domestic violence.

Prior to being suspended by Goodell, Peterson had been on the commissioner's "exempt list," which took him off the field but allowed him to collect his $11.75 million salary.

Goodell removed Peterson from the list and suspended the six-time Pro Bowler without pay after he pleaded no contest on Nov. 4 to misdemeanor reckless assault of his son.   Continued...

 
Suspended Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson (L) exits following his hearing against the NFL over his punishment for child abuse, in  New York December 2, 2014. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid