The U.S. Supreme Court declined yesterday to consider Maurice Clarett's appeal of his lawsuit against the NFL.
Clarett, the former Ohio State tailback, sued the league in an unsuccessful attempt to enter last year's draft. Clarett continued to appeal the decision even though he is eligible for this month's draft. His draft stock plummeted with a poor workout at the NFL scouting combine in late February, but he improved his status -- perhaps to the point of being a late-round selection -- with a better showing before scouts last week at his former high school in Warren, Ohio. He hasn't played for two seasons since helping Ohio State to a national championship as a freshman.
Maurice Clarett could be taken in this year's draft.
(Michael Conroy - AP)
A federal judge initially ruled in Clarett's favor last year in his lawsuit, calling the NFL's draft-eligibility rule -- that a player must be at least three years removed from high school -- a violation of antitrust law.
But a three-judge panel of a federal appeals court granted the NFL's request for an injunction that kept Clarett out of last year's draft, and two Supreme Court justices denied Clarett's requests for emergency relief. The appeals-court judges later overturned the initial ruling, siding with the league's argument that the draft-eligibility rule is legal because it was established through collective bargaining with the NFL Players Association. . . .
The Baltimore Ravens are discussing a possible trade with Philadelphia in which they would obtain defensive tackle Corey Simon, the Eagles' franchise player, for second- and third-round draft choices, an NFL source said.
But for the deal to be completed, the Ravens must agree to a contract extension with Simon, said the source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because negotiations were at a sensitive stage.
-- Mark Maske