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Ex-players sue NFLPA over rich licensing deals, use of images

LOS ANGELES -- Five retired players are suing the NFL Players Association in federal court, claiming the organization denied them and other former athletes lucrative royalties from licensing deals that used their images.

The class-action lawsuit, first reported by the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, was filed Wednesday in Los Angeles. The suit alleges breach of fiduciary duty by the players association and its for-profit Players Inc. subsidiary.

An email message left for NFLPA spokesman George Atallah wasn't immediately returned Monday.

Among those suing the players association are former Washington Redskins wide receiver Walter Roberts III, former Baltimore Colts linebacker Bob Grant and former Cincinnati Bengals safety Marvin Cobb.

More than 2,000 ex-players agreed to a $26 million settlement two years ago over similar allegations. However, the new suit claims thousands of other players are entitled to royalties from video games, trading cards and other products that used their voices and photos.

Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press

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