Eagles right tackle Lane Johnson filed unfair labor practice charges against the NFL and the NFL Players' Association with the National Labor Relations Board. Johnson also filed a complaint against the NFLPA with the Department of Labor under the Labor Management Reporting and Disclosure Act. Sports Illustrated first reported the filings.
Johnson, 26, is serving a 10-game suspension for his second violation of the league's performance-enhancing-drug policy. The suspension started Oct. 11. He has missed six games and has four remaining before he can return Dec. 19. In addition to his missing 10 games, the guaranteed money in Johnson's contract was also voided. He signed a five-year, $56.25 million contract extension in January, with $35 million guaranteed.
The league's policy on performance-enhancing substances "guarantees rights, protections and due process to players in recognition of the enormous consequences of discipline," Johnson's attorney, Steve Zashin, said in a statement. "The NFL and the NFLPA have undermined these protections, leaving the players - including Lane - with a hollowed-out process devoid of any protections. The actions of the NFL and NFLPA violate federal law."
The suspension came after Johnson said he tested positive for a banned peptide in a supplement. He directed his ire at the NFLPA when news of the suspension first broke because, he said, he purchased basic amino acids online, checked the ingredients with a smartphone application offered by the players union, and believed it was an approved supplement.
"The NFLPA does not stand up for players," Johnson said in August. "They don't check the supplements. They give us an app. And when you call them and ask them if you test positive for something they approve, it doesn't matter."
The NFLPA said in a statement in August that Johnson's comments were "factually inaccurate," that it does not approve any supplements, and that it reminds players that supplements do not always list ingredients.
The Eagles selected Johnson out of Oklahoma with the fourth overall pick of the 2013 draft.