Cedric Benson's suspension isn't just a matter of an NFL player violating the personal conduct policy and being disciplined for his actions during the NFL's lockout. The situation is that Benson is one of eight players that the NFL and NFLPA agreed to suspend due to their actions during a lockout in which the player's union wasn't even a union. And Benson isn't taking this sitting down. Per Pro Football Talk:
Per a source with knowledge of the situation, Benson has filed an unfair labor practice charge with the National Labor Relations Board against the NFLPA. Benson challenges the August 4 letter agreement on numerous grounds.
Apart from the obvious notion that the NFLPA wasn’t a union during the period of the lockout and thus had no ability to do anything on Benson’s behalf, Benson argues that he wasn’t an employee of any team during the lockout.
We’re also told that Benson didn’t even know about the August 4 letter agreement, and that the NFLPA failed to respond to efforts on his behalf to obtain information regarding the resolution of the application of the personal conduct policy to incidents occurring during the lockout.
According to PFT, the agreement between the NFL and NFLPA that throws Benson and seven others (including Adam Jones) under the bus, exempts "another 25 from discipline for off-field incidents during the lockout." To me it would seem that a union designed to represent and protect their players is doing exactly the opposite.
Benson, who is scheduled to appear for his appeal in New York on Tuesday, commented after the game on the situation:
“There were some things in the CBA that we were not made aware of, which is really no surprise. That kind of falls on the PA (players association),” Benson said. You would think they’re here to support you and have your back, that’s what a union does. I guess in my case it’s different.
“We’ve got a lot of good cards to play, a lot of evidence, a lot of facts to back me. We’ll present those things and hope for the best.”