It’s quite a Hail Mary!
A pair of New York football fans have called an audible in their pie-the-sky $ 6 billion class-action lawsuit against the Jets, Giants and the National Football League.
They’ve modified their suit that initially demanded both teams pack their pads and leave the Garden State for the Big Apple.
Now they’re making a slightly more manageable request – the teams can stay in New Jersey but must dump “New York” from their names.
“New York City is the Big Apple, home of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, Wall Street and the stock market, Broadway musicals tickertape parades…,” says the amended Manhattan federal court complaint filed last month.
“MetLife Stadium is located in the swamps of East Rutherford, NJ which, which has a population under 10,000, the 116th largest city in New Jersey. It’s not exactly an exciting and romantic destination[,] and the Giants, Jets and MetLife Stadium have absolutely no connection whatsoever with the city, county or state of New York. ”
The Giants fled the Empire State for not-so-greener pastures at the Meadowlands in 1976, and the Jets followed 8 years later. Both teams now share MetLife Stadium after previously playing at the Meadowlands in former Giants Stadium.
Plaintiffs Abdiell Suero and Maggie Wilkins insist they were duped by false advertising and other fraudulent deceptive practices into believing the Giants and Jets still played in New York and shelled out some significant green to see Blue Blue and Gang Green play at MetLife Stadium.
Suero, who describes himself as an avid football fan, told The Post he was shocked a few years back when he found out his beloved Giants actually called East Rutherford, NJ, home. By then it was too late because he had already bought tickets.
The Manhattan-based financial representative quipped the experience was as unbearable as watching Joe Judge coach the Giants the past few years – and the schlep to MetLife made the experience even worse.
“I spent more time traveling to get to the game than the game actually lasted,” said Suero, 32, the lone plaintiff in the original complaint filed in January.
After the league and clubs laughed off the request for teams to return to New York like it was a Mark Sanchez “butt fumble,” the complaint was amended late last month with new demand.
The amended claim also requests MetLife Stadium drop its “cash-free” concession policy that has been in place since last season, saying it violates New Jersey law. It added Wilkins, a New Mexico native who now calls the Big Apple home, as a second plaintiff.
The class-action case also seeks to represent anyone who has been tricked by the teams’ marketing since 2016 into attending NFL games at the stadium.
Suero and Wilkins upped their argument Monday.
Their lawyer Evan Spencer filed legal papers outlining how MetLife Stadium and the rest of swampy Meadowlands was once a haven for lawbreakers illegally dumping toxic waste – as well as traditional trash disposal businesses – and should never be confused with the Big Apple.
“Not only isn’t the Meadowlands in New York, it was the site of one of the country’s biggest garbage dumps for decades before the defenders’ stadiums were built on top of it,” wrote Spencer, demanding the case move forward.
He also claimed the defenders recently scrubbed MetLife Stadium’s website only after the lawsuit was filed to make it clear that the venue isn’t in New York.
The NFL, Jets and Giants filed legal papers April 25 seeking to get the suit dismissed, insisting the teams’ ‘continued use of’ New York ‘as part of their team names is not thinking at all – it merely refers to the teams’ hometown . ”
“These claims are calculated to score points in the headlines – not the courtroom,” their lawyers wrote.
They also noted that MetLife is a mere 7 miles from Manhattan – which is well within the 75-mile radius covering the teams’ NFL territory rights that cover parts of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut.
Still, Giants 2022 first-round pick Evan Neal recently admitted that even he thought Big Blue played in New York until being drafted by the club last month.
“I didn’t even know the Giants were in Jersey. So that was news to me, ” said the Florida native and former University of Alabama star, laughing, while addressing reporters two weeks ago. “I thought they were in New York.”