STATEMENT FROM SAINTS DE WILL SMITH
“As we get closer to kickoff on Sunday, I am disappointed my playing status remains in limbo. I respect Judge Berrigan’s order and my legal team has been diligent in responding. The NFLPA has represented the players in line with their valued role in serving a unique group of professionals, and we have been personally involved in every part of this process and there is no conflict of interest to speak of.
“Irreparable harm has already been levied on me and the players. We have been unfairly labeled and punished by this process. While we believe in mediation and settlement, the NFL has never expressed a genuine interest in a mediation process that would provide the players with a fair venue that could be trusted, nor made a settlement offer for us to professionally consider, at any time. That is why we have asked the court for just relief.
“It is my sincere hope to have this matter resolved as quickly as possible so I may return to my job, teammates and fans, as we take the field against the Redskins.”