The world spins forward. But some New Orleans Saints fans want it to go backward.
NBC affiliate WDSU first reported on Monday that a Saints-related lawsuit had been filed in New Orleans Civil District Court. The suit seeks to have NFL commissioner Roger Goodell enforce a rule that would allow the end of the disputed Saints-Los Angeles Rams game to be replayed due to the missed pass interference call late in the fourth quarter. The Saints lost that game in overtime, and many fans blame the missed call.
Lawsuit wants the game replayed
According to the New Orleans Advocate, Saints season ticket holders Tommy Badeaux and Candis Lambert hired a local personal injury lawyer to file a lawsuit against the NFL and Goodell on their behalf, and on behalf of the entire “Who Dat Nation.” The suit claims that Saints fans suffered incredible damages from the missed call, including mental anguish, emotional trauma, loss of enjoyment of life, and more — including a loss of faith in the NFL. Here’s a snippet of the damages section of the suit, via the Advocate:
“As a direct result of the said incident, plaintiffs herein have been left bereft and with no faith in the National Football league for fairness despite the league’s own rules to correct such errors, along with emotional anguish, monetary loss for ticket holders, who purchases tickets with the presumption of integrity and fairness.”
Who knew you could sue over losing faith in the NFL? Once people realize that, the NFL will be up to its neck in lawsuits.
The suit doesn’t specify any recourse, financial or otherwise. But the Advocate reported that the suit did note rule 17, section 2, article 3 of the NFL rulebook, which gives Goodell the power to have a game or part of a game replayed due to “extraordinary circumstances.” A blown call is far from extraordinary, but some Saints fans obviously believe this particular blown call is different than every other blown call that has ever happened in the history of the NFL.
Who is the lawyer behind the lawsuit?
Get ready for this guy. The lawyer hired by Badeaux and Lambert is Frank D’Amico Jr., a personal injury lawyer in New Orleans. And like many local personal injury lawyers, his commercials have a lot of … character.
Yes, that’s a 3D animated guy with D’Amico’s face bursting through a wall, and then his left bicep grows so large that it busts the fabric of his suit. “The Strong Arm” is D’Amico’s lawyer nickname.
“The Strong Arm” released a statement about the lawsuit, but there’s a slight problem with it. The majority of it was copied and pasted, word for word, from a ProFootballTalk article.
D’Amico released the largely copied statement without any attribution, passing it off as his own. Hopefully the suit he filed in district court doesn’t have the same issue. Either way, it’s probably too late for the guys who hired D’Amico to get a refund.
Are there other legal actions afoot?
You bet! In addition to the lawsuit that was filed on Tuesday, WDSU reported that two lawyers from Lafayette, Louisiana (about 130 miles from New Orleans) sent a letter to Goodell, formally requesting him to enforce Rule 17 and have the end of the game replayed. Clé Simon and Kevin R. Duck sent the letter, which asked Goodell to consider the integrity of the game, and how the blown call would represent a “black eye” on the history and integrity of the NFL. I’m sure Goodell will jump on a plane to Louisiana as soon as he reads that!
There is likely to be a lot more (probably futile) legal wrangling from angry, angry Saints fans with money to burn on hiring lawyers to file lawsuits about a blown call in a football game. But no matter how these lawsuits turn out, Saints fans aren’t going to let anyone forget about how they were denied a Super Bowl appearance for a long, long, long, long time.
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