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Woman sues Cowboys owner Jerry Jones alleging sexual assault

Woman sues Cowboys owner Jerry Jones alleging sexual assault
Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said he has been barred from talking about Cleveland Browns backup quarterback Johnny Manziel. (Mark Zaleski / Associated Press)

An Oklahoma woman says in a lawsuit that Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones paid her for at least four years to prevent her from reporting an alleged sexual assault.

Jana Weckerly's attorney, Thomas Bowers, filed an updated lawsuit Monday that accuses Jones of forcibly touching Weckerly's genitals and kissing her on the lips without her consent more than five years ago, then bullying her into not reporting the alleged attack. The lawsuit seeks more than $1 million in damages.

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Jones has denied Weckerly's allegations and the Cowboys on Wednesday referred to an earlier statement from Jones attorney Levi McCathern calling the claims "completely false."

"This is nothing more than an attempt to embarrass and extort Jerry Jones," McCathern said in the statement made immediately after the lawsuit was initially filed Sept. 8.

Bowers did not return a phone message Wednesday afternoon. Both sides have cited a gag order issued in the case since the suit was first filed as reason for declining additional comment.

The updated version of the lawsuit filed this week, parts of which were blacked out when publicly released per a judge's order, claims Jones and the Cowboys sent money to Weckerly's bank account from 2009 until at least July 2013. The lawsuit says her bank records can prove the payments occurred, though no records are included in her court filing.

She also accused Jones, the Cowboys and a longtime lawyer for Jones of taking her cellphone's memory card, which contained photos that were then leaked and posted on the Internet.

A hearing on Friday is expected to address whether the lawsuit was filed too late due to a five-year statute of limitations.

Retirees seek to delay concussion settlement

Attorneys representing 214 retired NFL players filed an emergency motion late Tuesday to delay the league's proposed concussion settlement.

The motion, filed in U.S. District Court in Philadelphia, seeks to push two key deadlines into next year to provide more time for ex-players to review the deal.

"Unless the schedule is modified, class members will not have information they need to evaluate the settlement," the filing by San Francisco attorney Daniel Girard and two Mississippi-based firms said.

Currently, retired players must decide whether to opt out or object to the settlement by Oct. 14. A fairness hearing is scheduled for Nov. 19.

Tuesday's motion would move the deadline for opt-outs and objections to Jan. 12 and the fairness hearing to the week of Feb. 16. Additionally, the motion would require that papers supporting the deal be filed in November.

The motion says that retired players should be able to examine the data that led to the settlement, not just the actuarial reports supporting the deal that were released this month.

Last week, attorneys for the families of late Chicago Bears defensive back Dave Duerson and San Diego Chargers linebacker Lewis Bush asked the court to delay the Oct. 14 deadline.

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U.S. District Judge Anita Brody has scheduled an Oct. 7 teleconference with attorneys to discuss the request.

—Nathan Fenno

Cassel is done for the season

Minnesota Vikings quarterback Matt Cassel will miss the season because of broken bones in his left foot, and right guard Brandon Fusco will also be out for the rest of the year because of a pectoral muscle injury.

The Vikings placed Cassel and Fusco on injured reserve Wednesday. Both players were hurt Sunday at New Orleans.

Cassel was replaced by rookie Teddy Bridgewater, and Christian Ponder will be the backup moving forward. Vladimir Ducasse filled in for Fusco.

Tight end Kyle Rudolph had surgery Tuesday to repair a sports hernia but might return to action this season.

Carson Palmer is able to throw

Carson Palmer finally was able to throw the football again Wednesday, and the Arizona quarterback is aiming for a return next week when the Cardinals play the Broncos in Denver on Oct. 5.

Palmer had not been able to throw the ball since pinching a nerve in his throwing shoulder when he was slammed into the ground during Arizona's season-opening victory over San Diego.

Etc.

San Diego Chargers linebacker Manti Te'o said he's "frustrated and devastated" with a third foot injury in 13 months.

Te'o suffered a fractured right foot in Sunday's 22-10 victory at Buffalo. Neither Te'o nor Coach Mike McCoy would say if the player will need surgery.

Baltimore Ravens left tackle Eugene Monroe will be sidelined for several weeks following knee surgery. He will be replaced by rookie James Hurst.

The Oakland Raiders placed safety Tyvon Branch on injured reserve and claimed Brandian Ross off waivers from the Miami Dolphins.

Branch broke his foot Sunday in a loss at New England and will miss the rest of the season. He hurt his ankle in the second game of 2013 and missed the rest of the year.

Chicago Bears linebacker Shea McClellin will miss his second straight game because of a hand injury.

The Jacksonville Jaguars have benched two more starters, sitting down safety Winston Guy and linebacker LaRoy Reynolds in favor of backups Josh Evans and J.T. Thomas. Evans and Thomas will start Sunday at San Diego.

The Cardinals signed defensive tackle Bruce Gaston and released running back Jalen Parmele.

The NFL players' union has hired former federal prosecutor Richard Craig Smith to oversee its investigation into the Ray Rice domestic violence case.

Smith will look at how the league and the Baltimore Ravens handled issues of due process and discipline, as well as look at the conduct of the league office and the Ravens that led to the indefinite suspension Commissioner Roger Goodell gave to Rice.

Rice and the NFL Players Assn. have appealed his suspension.

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