Developments in Two Different Courtrooms in Vick Case

U.S. District Judge Henry E. Hudson may have provided a preview of the approach that he will take in sentencing suspended Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick when he sentenced two of Vick's co-defendants Friday.

Hudson sentenced Purnell Peace to 18 months in prison and Quanis Phillips to 21 months in jail.

Both men had pleaded guilty, like Vick, to federal conspiracy charges related to their participation in a dogfighting operation based at a property owned by Vick in southeastern Virginia.

Vick is scheduled to be sentenced by Hudson on Dec. 10. He surrendered voluntarily and began serving his prison sentence three weeks early. Vick faces a recommended sentence of 12 to 18 months, but could be sentenced to as much as five years in prison if Hudson chooses.

Also Friday, attorneys for the NFL Players Association argued before U.S. District Judge David Doty in Minneapolis that Vick should be allowed to keep the $19.97 million in bonus money being sought from him by the Falcons.

Stephen Burbank--the University of Pennsylvania law professor who serves as the NFL's special master, putting him in charge of resolving disputes between the league and players' union arising from the collective bargaining agreement--previously ruled that the Falcons have the right to pursue the money through a separate arbitrator. The union is appealing that decision to Doty, who oversees the sport's labor deal.

It is not clear when Doty will rule.

By Mark Maske |  December 1, 2007; 11:49 AM ET  | Category:  Falcons , League
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