NFL coaches are teaming up with the players in their legal fight to end the owner-imposed lockout. The NFL Coaches Association filed a brief with the Eighth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday supporting the players and saying that the lockout is putting their jobs in jeopardy.
The owners locked out the players in March after the collective bargaining agreement expired. Players filed suit seeking an end to the lockout and urged owners to return to the table.
No individual coaches were identified in the brief, which said that the eight new coaches hired this year face particularly daunting odds of success if the lockout is not lifted soon.
The NFL grants new coaches two extra summer minicamps to get players familiar with the new staff, and the elimination of those camps puts them at a competitive disadvantage heading into the season.
The appeals court has set a June 3 date to hear arguments on whether the lockout is legal. A federal judge in St. Paul, Minn., initially ruled that the lockout was illegal, but the Eighth Circuit put a stay on that ruling pending the appeal.