Are the Redskins about to take the drastic step of suing their partners?

According to the Washington Post, the Redskins have let it be known to some around the league that they are considering taking the league to court in order to have all or part of their $18 million salary cap penalty overturned. They may ask a judge for an injunction to block the scheduled May 12 start of free agency until the salary cap matter has been settled.

Mike Shanahan and Bruce Allen have let it be known in recent months that the team still intended to fight the cap penalty but no details were given. Until today, there was no indication that they would take the most drastic measure available, to use amounts to the nuclear option.

There are pitfalls in suing a league of which you are a member. In 1980 Al Davis sued the NFL to move his Raiders from Oakland to Los Angeles. He won the antitrust suit and moved the team to the LA Coliseum in 1982. He spent the rest of his years as an outcast among NFL owners. When he wanted improvements to the LA Coliseum and, after he moved the team back to Oakland in 1995, the Oakland Coliseum, he got precious little support from the league.

The possibility of strained relations with the other owners would be the risk the Redskins would be taking by going to court against the league. Even if they win there could be ramifications that last for decades and end up being more costly than what might be gained by winning the ability to spend an additional $18 million in player salary.