Redskins, Cowboys seek arbitration concerning cap

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WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) -- The Washington Redskins and Dallas Cowboys sought arbitration Sunday for the NFL reducing their salary caps for the next two seasons.

A provision in the new collective bargaining agreement allows the case to be heard by arbitrator Stephen Burbank, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania.

Both teams were penalized for overloading contracts in the 2010 uncapped season despite league warnings to restrict doing so. Washington has been given a $36 million reduction over two years, while Dallas loses $10 million. Each must take at least half the reduction this year.

The NFL Players Association agreed to have the 2012 salary cap set at $120.6 million rather than a lower number and for the Redskins and Cowboys to take those reductions. Otherwise, the cap would have been significantly lower.

The Redskins and Cowboys filed their grievances against the league and players association.

New York Giants owner John Mara, chairman of the league's Management Council, has defended the reductions and said the Redskins and Cowboys were fortunate they didn't lose any draft picks for the violations.

Neither Washington nor Dallas has been shy about signing free agents this year. The Redskins grabbed receivers Pierre Garcon and Joshua Morgan, and safety Brandon Meriweather. They also gave a bigger contract to defensive end Adam Carriker.

Dallas signed cornerback Brandon Carr, quarterback Kyle Orton, safety Brodney Pool and guard Nate Livings, among others.