Reports: Tom Brady lawyers up by hiring NFL nemesis Jeffrey Kessler for Deflategate appeal

–The Boston Globe/Jim Davis

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It appears Tom Brady is starting to dust himself off and pick himself off the mat.

Per multiple reports, Brady has added venerable attorney and NFL foe Jeffrey Kessler to his legal counsel in preparation of his appeal of the four-game suspension handed down by the league.

The National Football League Players’ Association hired gun has a history of success when facing off against the league in the courts. Most recently, Kessler was behind the efforts that successfully overturned former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice’s indefinite suspension, and he was instrumental in getting Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson reinstated.

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The high-profile Kessler also represented the NFLPA in challenging and successfully ending the 2011 NFL lockout, and was a key figure in forcing the dismissal of the New Orleans Saints’ Bountygate penalties by successfully arguing that NFL commissioner Roger Goodell’s punishment was excessive.

In 1995, Kessler represented Freeman McNeil in a case that helped establish free agency in the NFL and he settled the Reggie White case that focused on restrictions of player movement.

Patriots head coach Bill Belichick was also represented by Kessler in 2000 when Belichick sued the NFL and the New York Jets in federal court to release himself from the Jets’ contract so he could join the Patriots.

Kessler has also been retained by the players’ associations of the NBA, NHL and North American Soccer League.

Brady has until 5 p.m. Thursday to appeal the league’s penalties.

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