|Hearing set on Lions' bid to recoup Rogers' bonus money|
|Written by Admin|
|Wednesday, 09 May 2007 12:27|
ALLEN PARK, Mich. (AP) -An arbitrator is expected to hear the Detroit Lions' case in their bid to recover $10.1 million of a rookie signing bonus paid to Charles Rogers, a first-round draft choice whose career was cut short by injuries and drug problems.|
The Thursday hearing in Detroit is expected to involve a grievance the Lions filed late in the 2005 season. The club claimed Rogers, who starred at Michigan State before he was taken with the No.2 overall pick in 2003, diminished his value to the team by failing a drug test earlier that season.
The NFL suspended the Saginaw native for four games in 2005 for violating the league's substance abuse policy. In an interview on the NFL Network, Rogers admitted he had tested positive for smoking marijuana.
Tom Lewand, the Lions' chief operating officer, said there was no timetable for the arbitrator to make a ruling.
``A lot depends on the arbitrator's schedule,'' Lewand told The Detroit News. ``I have no way of knowing until we get in there.''
Rogers' total signing bonus was for $14.4 million. The NFL Players Association has argued that the Lions have no right to make Rogers repay any portion of the bonus.
Rogers played five games in 2003 before a broken collarbone ended his season, then sustained the same season-ending injury on the third play of the 2004 opener. He was released after training camp in 2005 and again in 2006.
For his career, Rogers caught 36 passes and scored four touchdowns - two of them in his first game with the Lions.
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