SBD/3/Leagues Governing Bodies

SHARPE FILES LAWSUIT AGAINST PACKERS, UNION AND LEAGUE

     Former Packers WR Sterling Sharpe filed suit against the
Packers, the NFL Management Council and the NFLPA contending that
he was denied due process under the NFL's grievance procedure.
The suit was filed in Tampa, where Sharpe played his last NFL
game.  Sharpe was released by the Packers on  February 28 when he
refused to take a pay cut after suffering a spinal injury late in
the '94 season and undergoing surgery to fuse two vertebrae in
his neck.  The Packers will seek "immediate dismissal of the
suit."  Packers attorney Lance Lopes:  "The allegations are no
different than those already raised in the grievance
proceedings."  Sharpe's attorney, Grady Irvin, a former NFLPA
lawyer, told the MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL that he would ask for
Sharpe's $3.2M salary for '95 plus punitive damages, court costs
and attorney fees.  The Packers wanted to reduce Sharpe's salary
from $3.2M to $200,000.  The NFLPA filed a grievance on Sharpe's
behalf on March 8 seeking full salary for '95.  At issue in the
grievance procedure, said Irvin, is a provision that requires the
Packers to hold half of Sharpe's '95 salary against the team's
salary cap figure until the grievance is settled.  Sharpe wants
the case to be treated as an "injury-type grievance that would
require him to be examined by a neutral physician and give him
more time to argue his case."  Irvin said the NFLPA was sued
because "it conspired with the league to get Sharpe to withdraw
the grievance so the Packers could use his salary to sign more
members of the union's bargaining unit" (AP/N.Y. TIMES, 5/3).
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