Williams & Connolly Scores Victory for Firm Client Shannon Sharpe in Defamation Case

November 2023

On October 30, 2023, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi ruled in favor of firm client, Shannon Sharpe, in a defamation action brought against him by NFL Hall of Famer Brett Favre related to Sharpe’s comments on his show, “Undisputed,” concerning Favre’s purported connection to a Mississippi welfare fraud scandal.  After successfully transferring the case to federal court, we the firm filed a motion to dismiss, arguing that, among other things, Sharpe’s comments could not form the basis of a defamation claim because they were nothing more than rhetorical hyperbole and figurative expressions about Favre.  On October 30, the court granted the motion, agreeing that Sharpe’s comments were constitutionally protected rhetorical hyperbole and could not support a defamation claim as a matter of law.  
The team representing Shannon Sharpe includes Joe Terry and Tyler Infinger.  

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