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A federal judge is hearing arguments Wednesday from attorneys representing current and former NFL players who want the league to lift its lockout and this year’s football season to proceed.

Judge Susan Richard Nelson is considering whether to grant a preliminary injunction that would lift the lockout, the result of an ongoing dispute between the NFL owners and the players who have failed to reach a collective-bargaining agreement.

It’s possible that Nelson will make a decision after Wednesday’s hearing at U.S. District Court in St. Paul.

If she rules in favor of a preliminary injunction, the NFL is likely to appeal.

If she rejects the players’ motion, the lockout will continue.

Tom Brady, Drew Brees, Peyton Manning and seven other players have filed a lawsuit on behalf of other current and eligible NFL players against the league to halt the lockout, which could affect the start of the 2011-12 season scheduled for September 8.


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