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New NFL royalty battle kicks off in Pittsburgh federal court

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Monday, Dec. 23, 2013, 3:00 p.m.

The final settlement of an National Football League royalty case in Minnesota federal court has kicked of a new lawsuit by more than 630 retired professional football players in Pittsburgh federal court.

The players filed a similar lawsuit in August, but the federal judge overseeing the national settlement ordered it and similar lawsuits dropped until the agreement was made final.

Jason Luckasevic said that Monday was the first day the players who opted out of the settlement could file their own lawsuits.

“Since these guys have retired the NFL has continued to profit off the use of their images,” but the players haven't shared in those profits, he said.

The lawsuit seeks damages for those unpaid royalties. An NFL spokesman couldn't be reached for comment.

The players Luckasevic represents opted out of a $42 million settlement between the NFL and other retired players. That agreement doesn't pay the retirees directly. It formed the Common Good Fund, which will distribute the settlement money to groups that help retired players with medical, housing and career transition costs.

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