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NFL Notes: Another hearing set over Ezekiel Elliott's suspension

NEW YORK -- A federal appeals court has set a Thursday hearing as attorneys for Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott seek a longer-lasting injunction to stop his six-game suspension over domestic violence allegations.

The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday issued an emergency stay of the NFL's punishment, the third legal reprieve for Elliott. It cleared last year's league rushing leader to play in Sunday's game against Kansas City. Elliott scored the go-ahead touchdown in the Cowboy's 28-17 win over the Chiefs.

It is possible, if not likely, that the three-judge panel in New York will rule as early as Thursday, after oral arguments, on whether Elliott can play Sunday at Atlanta.

None of the judges assigned to Elliott's case presided over the NFL's winning appeal in Patriots quarterback Tom Brady's four-game suspension in the Deflategate case.

Elliott's suspension has been weaving through the courts since he was ordered in August to serve the ban for violating the league's personal conduct policy.

Texans: O'Brien says team has discussed signing Kaepernick
HOUSTON -- Houston Texans coach Bill O'Brien says he and general manager Rick Smith have discussed signing Colin Kaepernick in the wake of last week's season-ending injury to Deshaun Watson.

When asked about Kaepernick on Monday, a day after Tom Savage struggled in a loss to the Colts, O'Brien said: "We talk about the roster and what's out there every day Rick and I."

When pressed on whether they have specifically discussed adding Kaepernick he said: "Oh yeah, everybody gets discussed."

Kaepernick, the former 49ers quarterback, began the national anthem protest movement by kneeling last season. He remains unsigned and has filed a complaint that team owners colluded against him because of the protests, which are aimed at police brutality against African-Americans and other social justice issues.

The Texans have not been very active in anthem protests, but the majority of the team kneeled during the anthem before a game on Oct. 29 at Seattle after a report revealed that team owner Bob McNair said, "We can't have the inmates running the prison," during a meeting of NFL owners about players who protest by kneeling. No member of the team kneeled this week before Houston's annual salute to service game to honor members of the military (see full story).

Jets: Jeremy Kerley suspended 4 games for PED violation
NEW YORK -- New York Jets wide receiver-punt returner Jeremy Kerley has been suspended four games without pay by the NFL for violating the league's policy on performance enhancing substances.

The NFL says in a statement Monday that Kerley's suspension begins immediately. He will be eligible to return to the Jets' active roster on Dec. 11, the day after New York plays at Denver. The next game in which Kerley will be able to play will be at New Orleans on Dec. 17.

In a statement released by his representatives, Kerley says he was "shocked" to test positive for Turinabol. He adds that he has never used steroids and fully intends to investigate what caused the positive test.

Kerley, who has 22 catches for 217 yards and a touchdown, says he has always been and will continue to be "a clean player."

Buccaneers: Mike Evans suspended 1 game
TAMPA, Fla. -- The NFL suspended Tampa Bay receiver Mike Evans for one game Monday for unsportsmanlike conduct and unnecessary roughness in the Buccaneers' loss at New Orleans.

Evans ran up from behind and knocked over Saints rookie cornerback Marshon Lattimore after a confrontation between Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston, who was on the sideline because of a sore shoulder, and Lattimore.

"During the third quarter, after a play had ended, you struck an unsuspecting opponent in the back, knocking him to the ground," Jon Runyan, the league's vice president of football operations, wrote to Evans. "Your conduct clearly did not reflect the high standards of sportsmanship expected of a professional."

Evans was penalized but not ejected from the Saints' 30-10 victory. He will miss the Bucs' home game against the Jets on Sunday and can return to the active roster next Monday. But he can appeal the suspension within three days.