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Gregg Williams apologizes for “terrible mistake”

Gregg Williams AP

Rams defensive coordinator Gregg Williams has publicly apologized, hours after the NFL announced that Williams had violated league rules by orchestrating a system of bounties during his time on the staff of the Saints.

“I want to express my sincere regret and apology to the NFL, Mr. Benson, and the New Orleans Saints fans for my participation in the ‘pay for performance’ program while I was with the Saints,” Williams said. “It was a terrible mistake, and we knew it was wrong while we were doing it. Instead of getting caught up in it, I should have stopped it. I take full responsibility for my role. I am truly sorry. I have learned a hard lesson and I guarantee that I will never participate in or allow this kind of activity to happen again.”

Williams isn’t making any type of effort to deny or minimize his role in this: He broke the rules, he knows he broke the rules, and he knows consequences are coming.

The question now is what kind of consequences will be coming. The Saints are sure to be disciplined by the league office, but if the Rams lose their defensive coordinator to a lengthy suspension, then two teams will be directly affected by this still unfolding story.

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93 Responses to “Gregg Williams apologizes for “terrible mistake””
  1. chiktikka says: Mar 2, 2012 5:37 PM

    Is Gregg Williams a child being peer pressured into smoking a cigarette his buddy found, or is he a grown man?

  2. duanethomas says: Mar 2, 2012 5:37 PM

    A slap on the wrist, but let it be a player and Roger would throw the book at him.

  3. stuartscottslefteye says: Mar 2, 2012 5:38 PM

    With all of the current lawsuits and emphasis on player safety don’t be surprised to see a loss of draft picks. The NFL knows they have make an example and stand strong in regards to player safety.

  4. thehighhat says: Mar 2, 2012 5:38 PM

    This guy should be kicked out of the league for at least a year after this.

    Who’s crying in their cereal now Gregg?

  5. purplengold says: Mar 2, 2012 5:38 PM

    His lawyer has apologized. Why does he think it was wrong? If he knew it was terribly wrong, then why did he continue? Nothing has changed.

  6. rooneyruleblues says: Mar 2, 2012 5:38 PM

    He needs to be suspended and fined. And the Saints need to be docked draft choices.

  7. atlsage says: Mar 2, 2012 5:38 PM

    Why is it always a “mistake” when they get caught? I’m sure he would be doing the same thing in St. Louis if he didn’t.

  8. coleman121280 says: Mar 2, 2012 5:38 PM

    and of what real consequence will come of this?

    nothing.

  9. caseyanthonymunoz says: Mar 2, 2012 5:40 PM

    Too late. You already tainted the team and their Super Bowl run.

  10. kylecleric says: Mar 2, 2012 5:40 PM

    Rams shouldn’t have hired him. Williams needs to be severely punished whether he’s suspended or banned from the NFL.

  11. billinva says: Mar 2, 2012 5:41 PM

    Terrible mistake?

    Whatever dude. You knew what you were doing.

  12. BlackAndGoldAllDay says: Mar 2, 2012 5:41 PM

    Sounds like a few players squealed. Hopefully the Saints have placed bounties on the squealers.

  13. slemmebo says: Mar 2, 2012 5:41 PM

    Goodbye 1 rd. pick

  14. fijabbersman345 says: Mar 2, 2012 5:41 PM

    Funny how he regrets everything after the news breaks. I bet if it hadn’t he wouldn’t have said a thing. Ever.

  15. IrsaysTwitterThumb says: Mar 2, 2012 5:41 PM

    “I knew it was wrong and I did it anyway”

    Dude, you are going to get SLAMMED.

  16. wryly1 says: Mar 2, 2012 5:42 PM

    Need to know who funded the bounty programs.

  17. bjavie says: Mar 2, 2012 5:42 PM

    You mean now that you got caught. What a jackass.

  18. noeffinway says: Mar 2, 2012 5:42 PM

    Has he really learned his lesson….already? seriously?

  19. weepingjebus says: Mar 2, 2012 5:42 PM

    Banned.

  20. mrplow3 says: Mar 2, 2012 5:42 PM

    Ok, ok Roger. Lets make a deal:

    You get Greg Williams head on a platter and all the players found guilty of this charge….

    …..BUT, in return, we get kickoffs back.

  21. athoula707 says: Mar 2, 2012 5:43 PM

    William is dirty. He shouldn’t be coaching any team. Sorry Rams…

  22. strategicaltruth says: Mar 2, 2012 5:43 PM

    They should make Greg Wiliams return his Super Bowl ring and any financial reward he received for winning the Super Bowl.

  23. WestCoastVet says: Mar 2, 2012 5:44 PM

    Kinda feel bad for the Rams now, even if they are division rivals.

  24. nflfan555 says: Mar 2, 2012 5:45 PM

    Ban him and take multiple high picks from Saints and oh by the way Loomis u really think Brees is an avg QB u moron!!!!

  25. rc33 says: Mar 2, 2012 5:45 PM

    NE’s got the Saints first-rounder this season.
    Bad enough, but if the league takes 2013’s #1 as well….yikes!

  26. tigerlilac says: Mar 2, 2012 5:45 PM

    So, is Williams a good guy now because he cried the crocodile tears Belichick refused to cry? I will take Belichick’s response of writing the big check sans the mea culpa, thank you.

  27. alldonesmith says: Mar 2, 2012 5:45 PM

    Well, at least he manned up and didn’t try to make excuses for his actions. But it doesn’t say much for a man’s character when he knows something is wrong and does it anyway. Especially for over 3 years.

  28. Joe says: Mar 2, 2012 5:46 PM

    Not like they got caught stealing signals after winning 3 superbowls.
    “Pay for performance”? Otherwise known as professional sports… So who writes the checks?

  29. omniscient48 says: Mar 2, 2012 5:46 PM

    I don’t understand this. Not only was the program illegal, but it must have been poorly managed because I think the Saints defense was terrible the last 3 years.

  30. athoula707 says: Mar 2, 2012 5:46 PM

    All the players got hit by Williams planing, nfl should let those player to hit williams. Saints and Williams done, what a jackass.

  31. time2speakup says: Mar 2, 2012 5:46 PM

    Well, two things: reports indicate this practice of intentionally trying to injure players went on for more than two seasons, and had no investigation revealed it, no one on the Saints would have said a word. So how valid is this, “I’m sorry” bit from person? Worthless is my opinion. I do not foster unemployment for anyone (been there, done that) but, I do think that some punishment that puts a stain or asterisk by his name from here out would be very appropriate. He earned it, let him wear the label of fraud.

  32. dpndots says: Mar 2, 2012 5:47 PM

    Honestly I don’t remember Bill Belichick apologizing about Spygate. Did he?

  33. wenellniners says: Mar 2, 2012 5:48 PM

    a lot of people are comparing this to the patriots “spy gate.” as bad as both incidents were, i think the spy gate situation is much worse.

    football is a game of two principals, misdirection and deception; without those two elements, you’re not playing football anymore.

    using a video camera to gain the defensive and offensive signals of the opposing team is a whole different type of cheating in my opinion.

    i don’t agree with what greg williams or the saints did but i don’t remember seeing anything but hard clean hits including the hit on kurt warner.

  34. thesarcasm says: Mar 2, 2012 5:48 PM

    Go get bent you dirty bastard. Hope they kick him out of the league. He’s been doing this for years.

  35. purplekoolaid1 says: Mar 2, 2012 5:52 PM

    I’m flabbergasted.

  36. cannonballdookie says: Mar 2, 2012 5:53 PM

    At least he’s being honest.
    Regardless, this is pretty bad and I expect a fine and penalty similar to spygate. Even though it didn’t really help them win, it’s a horrible practice and is still illegal so I expect them to be punished. They were going out of their way to injure Warner and Farve during their title run.

  37. trollhammer20 says: Mar 2, 2012 5:53 PM

    Gotta wonder….St. Louis fans, you really want this guy on your sidelines? I wouldn’t be surprised to see him get the axe. This isn’t a little thing that’s going to go away, this will be hanging over him for the rest of his career.

    If the NFL had any balls at all, they’d ban him from the league for life. What else is appropriate? Give him a fine, or make him miss a game or two, and some coaches might figure it’s worth the risk if they can get results similar to what the Saints had in 2009. Make it clear that this is just as bad as gambling in the eyes of the league, and people will get the message.

  38. dublindemonszfl says: Mar 2, 2012 5:55 PM

    They should pull their Superbowl Trophy just like the NCAA does for rule violations. Can’t give the Vikings the win, but they can take away the Saints win.

    Williams should be kicked out of the league, he admits he knew what he was doing, salary cap violations here for unreported pay to players. It should get real ugly for the Saints, to bad Williams dragged the Rams into it. The Rams don’t need any more problems.

    Maybe give the Vikings and the Rams the Saints 1st three picks this year and next!

  39. ilovefoolsball says: Mar 2, 2012 5:55 PM

    As far as this tainting the Saints Superbowl win, keep dreaming “other teams’ and don’t be mad bro (falcons, vikings fans). The Saints have a Lombardi and you don’t, and the NFL won’t strip them of that trophy so you can keep dreaming.

    The bigger question is, how is Williams ever going to have any credibility as a D coordinator going forward? His whole mantra is fear and punishment and now he has been reduced to a bawling apologetic toddler. How will those defensive players be able to respect him now that he’s lost his mystique.

  40. raiderlyfe510 says: Mar 2, 2012 5:55 PM

    I was always amazed that Drew Brees didn’t get lit up. Because if I’m a NFL head coach and team was admittedly going after my QB like the Saints were doing in 2009. I for sure will have my defense go after theirs and not only will they attempt to light Up their QB, they will succeed. Go on an throw the flag.

  41. cursedvikingfan says: Mar 2, 2012 5:56 PM

    First off let me say that this shouldn’t let the Vikings off the hook. THEY lost that Championship game more than the Saints won it. Fumbles, poor coaching and yes the INT at the end. They outplayed, and out gained the Saints and were still too inept to win.

    Now with that being said, this guy has always been a scumbag. The thing I feel that makes this different is they really didn’t hide the fact they were playing dirty. Everyone had suspected they were going after players. They are also not the first team to do it, I think just the most vocal about it. Makes you wonder how much Coach Peyton knew about it? Letting Williams go was a smart move for the Saints.

    Also, where is the onus on the league? Two cheap shots, one especially on Favre in the title game had something to do with the outcome, and the refs did nothing. Oh wait, they commented days later that flags should’ve been thrown. I really don’t agree this should taint anything the Saints have done. I mean they won the SB, but if Minnesota doesn’t screw themselves this is all just a story about a d-bag coordinator. It obviously didn’t help them the last 2 years.

  42. babyhorsemorgan says: Mar 2, 2012 5:56 PM

    Gregg attributed his bad behavior to menopausal mood swings.

  43. rugdog100 says: Mar 2, 2012 5:57 PM

    Gregg Williams is, and always has been, a punk and dirty coach. This story is no surprise to anyone who follows the NFL. Take NO’s SB trophy and rings away from them. Losers….

  44. shannysux says: Mar 2, 2012 5:58 PM

    This is probably similar to spygate in terms of rulebreaking, surely more teams do it, etc, etc. But when you consider the player safety aspect, this punishment could be much worse.

  45. bchapman2011 says: Mar 2, 2012 5:58 PM

    Sal Alosi of the Jets lost his job for tripping a Miami Dolphin player that was running on the sideline……..Greg Williams should be terminated by St Louis immediately and suspended by the NFL for 1 year.
    Dude is not even that good of a cordinator to justify keeping him in St Louis. His whole game plan is gimmicks and blitzes and once teams figure out where the heat is coming from they always smoke his defenses.

  46. bobulated says: Mar 2, 2012 5:59 PM

    Williams should be suspended until Kurt Warner takes a meaningful snap again.

  47. Chargers have no rings says: Mar 2, 2012 6:32 PM

    All he was trying to do was get Brett Favre to commit to retiring.

  48. anthonioustheprettygood says: Mar 2, 2012 6:33 PM

    translation” Because I got caught…. it was wrong and I’m very sorry.”

  49. palewook says: Mar 2, 2012 6:34 PM

    williams needs to be suspended from the nfl for a minimum of 1 year.

  50. phonymcringring says: Mar 2, 2012 6:35 PM

    Hey Gregg — you can’t pull a Pete Carroll if you stay in the same league dummy!

  51. nookers says: Mar 2, 2012 6:35 PM

    I’ve made bets with people are work before, is that a crime? Who cares … like really, the rich have the money .. might as well flaunt it.

  52. uschawk says: Mar 2, 2012 6:39 PM

    Marshawn Lynch was offered a bounty to make their defense look like the Keystone Cops.

  53. vikingsfan34 says: Mar 2, 2012 6:40 PM

    Williams doesnt apologize to the Cardinals or Vikings. He is a scumbag, He should lose the ability to coach in the NFL period. Ban him from the NFL and fine him his entire salary while with the saints and have him donate that amount to a local charity of the Cardinals and Vikings choice. CHEATER.

  54. yardape74 says: Mar 2, 2012 6:40 PM

    This clown isn’t even a quality coach. Loved watching his Defense get scorched in Frisco.

  55. airnrodgers says: Mar 2, 2012 6:44 PM

    Also read that Williams had the same system in Washington which just so happens to be when Peyton manning started having neck problems after a high/low hit in 06 against Washington, coincidence? I think not

  56. AlohaMrHand says: Mar 2, 2012 6:52 PM

    can the Raiders have your first round pick?

  57. patriotsssss says: Mar 2, 2012 6:57 PM

    You guys are a joke. Spygate was BS. Patriots still won 18 games after that. Such losers you guys are. And the Saints are still fine in my book. You can never take away the Saints SB. And you can’t even touch Patriots 3 SBs. Nothing you can do about it.

  58. seaner44 says: Mar 2, 2012 7:40 PM

    Suspend Moobs without pay and ban him from coaching for at least a year

  59. rgledz says: Mar 2, 2012 7:42 PM

    “I’m really, really sorry……….now that I’ve been caught.” Suck one Gregg, you deserve it. I hope you’re out of the league for this. Bring that garbage to the UFL where the bushleague amateur hour crap should be.

  60. jnbnet says: Mar 2, 2012 7:42 PM

    Not like they got caught stealing signals after winning 3 superbowls.
    “Pay for performance”? Otherwise known as professional sports… So who writes the checks?

    ================================
    Are you truly that stupid? No signals were “stolen.” Signals were taped from an “unathorized” location. Furthermore, no one was harmed by these actions. Trying to hurt aplayer or have carted off the field borders on criminal acts. If you took some one’s keen out in the street, and he had to be taken to the hospital….you would be cheking into the Hotel Graybar.

  61. hailvictory44 says: Mar 2, 2012 7:46 PM

    I’ll post this again and maybe the almighty censor will let it ride this time.

    Williams, “I made a terrible mistake…getting caught.”

  62. cobrala2 says: Mar 2, 2012 8:02 PM

    Goodell better own up and decimate Gregg Williams – in the least – if not also for every player that caused injury to an opponent under his “coaching”.

    MAN UP, COMMISH!

  63. goawayeverybody says: Mar 2, 2012 8:06 PM

    This excuse is unacceptable! He knew it was wrong while he was doing it? What a clown.

    The thing that burns me is that it takes away from some fine defensive play from the Saints during the 2009 and 2010 seasons (the defense was less effective in 2011). A lot of those guys played really, really well.

    Oh and I guess this means Darren Sharper is an abject liar since he’s denying it at the same time Gregg Williams admits it.

    I’m still a Saints fan, but let’s just say I won’t be buying any merchandise this year.

  64. raidermick says: Mar 2, 2012 8:18 PM

    They should take all the Saints Draft picks and give them to the Raiders. They would never hurt anybody….Oh wait, Sorry Ben

    Late…

  65. enochmh2 says: Mar 2, 2012 8:22 PM

    This should’nt really be a surprise,im certain other teams have done the same. Remember when the ravens were ‘rumoured’ to have a bounty on mendenhall. Lets not forget sean payton was the head coach,im sure he knew something about it

  66. thegonz13 says: Mar 2, 2012 8:26 PM

    You’re sorry!?! You paid guys to take out opponents and you’re sorry!

    Gregg, you’re only sorry because your arse got caught. Thankfully, you have far less talent in St. Louis to pull off this kind of crap.

    Yes Gregg, you are sorry. You’re a sorry excuse for a human being in addition to being a scumbag!

  67. sisqsage says: Mar 2, 2012 8:32 PM

    Always been an arrogant douche bag. Hope he gets nailed bigtime with a lengthy ban and $$$ fine.

  68. gb4mn0 says: Mar 2, 2012 8:35 PM

    Williams should be hailed as a hero and given a public service award for possibly keeping the vikequeefs for a SB.

  69. mgm36 says: Mar 2, 2012 8:38 PM

    too late for the apology greggo. it rings very hollow

  70. effjohntaylornorelation says: Mar 2, 2012 8:42 PM

    The “tell sign” here about what type of man Williams is became apparent when he apologized. I doubt his remorse is genuine but HE HAD NO PROBLEM admitting his actions while shoving the Saints into the fire. This prick doesn’t care about what he did only that the Saints did not want him back. I hope he is banned from the NFL.

  71. dobreshunka says: Mar 2, 2012 8:50 PM

    Wish I had come up with it, but…too bad he didn’t put a bounty on ‘tackle Vernon Davis’.

  72. deconjonesbitchslap says: Mar 2, 2012 9:02 PM

    the intent to injure anybody is absolutely horrendous. Mr. Williams, and saints defensive players, you don’t deserve your superbowl ring.

  73. crazybeardedjack says: Mar 2, 2012 9:15 PM

    Greggggg should be banned from the league and Sean Payton should be facing some serious disciplinary measures; couple of scumbags.

  74. hrdcorbengalsfan says: Mar 2, 2012 9:17 PM

    Man boobs in this pic?

  75. firstandonlywarning says: Mar 2, 2012 9:18 PM

    Strip the Saints of a 2nd round pick, 150,000 fine for Williams and the Saints

  76. therealsmiley says: Mar 2, 2012 9:19 PM

    He had to admit it because player(s) came forward. I heard snitches get stitches….just what I heard. And why should the Redskins lose a pick? Coach Gibbs already said he didn’t hear anything about this mess. Williams will get a year suspension, Saints get fined and that will be that. Hail!

  77. johanneschimpo says: Mar 2, 2012 9:20 PM

    What mistake? Sharper says it didn’t happen.

  78. paulieorkid says: Mar 2, 2012 9:23 PM

    Let’s be CLEAR here. Williams is claiming he merely made a mistake, albeit a terrible mistake.

    Seriously?

    Really???

    Since when did a repeated pattern of intentional misconduct … somehow morph into something that can be pawned off as “a mistake?”

    A mistake is a typo, a stumble over a crack in the sidewalk, a locked my keys in the car moment. We ALL make those kinds of mistakes.

    What a mistake is NOT —- is a pre-meditated, calculated, manipulative scheme to destroy lives and livelihoods of opponents and their families. Hardly any of us make that kind of “mistake.”

    So now, that disgusting beady-eyed bag of rotting excrement now is trying to play us again —> by feigning responsibilty while at the same time categorizing it as “a mistake.”

    Ban him from the NFL. Period.

  79. uncletuna says: Mar 2, 2012 9:34 PM

    Punish the individuals – if the team owner said knock it off and they continued without his knowledge then the individuals should receive the brunt of it…

    Gregg Willliams, Jon Vilma, Roman Harper should get the book and be suspended for a year…

    But if you are going to punish the team – punish all teams that have done it and let all of them lose their first round draft picks…

  80. nfl4life77 says: Mar 2, 2012 9:36 PM

    Tell what’s the difference with this issue and what Pete Rose did?

  81. themonster49 says: Mar 2, 2012 9:40 PM

    With the current information out, Williams has been running this reward-for-injury system for a considerable chunk of his life.

    This means he doesn’t get to straighten himself out, become himself again. This means the reward-for-injury is Greg Williams, he is the system, which makes him responsible.

    Hurt someone for 10 years and then apologize when finally made to stop, not of your own free will. See if anyone cares. See if anyone believes you have changed.

    So why should we believe Geg Williams thinks it is a mistake and wants to stop? If there was no threat, he would continue. End of story.

  82. detroitcityryda says: Mar 2, 2012 9:45 PM

    He will be fired by the rams because of this espn will blow it up worse than the penn state scandal that brought down the late great joe paterno

  83. mathsimillion says: Mar 2, 2012 10:03 PM

    A stupid meaningless apology that he only issued because he got caught. He should be suspended from coaching for a year.

  84. jimmysee says: Mar 2, 2012 10:06 PM

    That’s conspiracy and assault.

    It should be a police matter.

    All the “I’m sorrys” in the world don’t cut it.

  85. fjackie says: Mar 2, 2012 10:27 PM

    Hello, Arena League you d-bag.

  86. dwatkins69 says: Mar 2, 2012 10:30 PM

    Im So, So, Sorry (i got caught)

  87. dboskie says: Mar 2, 2012 10:57 PM

    wenellniners says:
    Mar 2, 2012 5:48 PM
    a lot of people are comparing this to the patriots “spy gate.” as bad as both incidents were, i think the spy gate situation is much worse.

    football is a game of two principals, misdirection and deception; without those two elements, you’re not playing football anymore.

    using a video camera to gain the defensive and offensive signals of the opposing team is a whole different type of cheating in my opinion.

    i don’t agree with what greg williams or the saints did but i don’t remember seeing anything but hard clean hits including the hit on kurt warner.
    ————————————————–
    Are you kidding me. They were penalized at least 4 times for late hits or unsportsmanlike conduct. This guy is a joke. Big B. in New England didn’t cause a guys career to be cut short because of a little video taping. I have loved the NFL and the hard hits for a long time. However, a dirty play is a dirty play and if players are rewarding each other for potentially shortening someone else’s career and it was done on purpose. That is freaking despicable. Your take is a joke! I don’t even like the Pats or B.B., but I can’t believe you think that taping B.S. is worse than this.

  88. casedogg says: Mar 2, 2012 11:05 PM

    Williams is a puke. I think the NFL should go after Sean Peyton as well. You know the head coach knew all about this as well. No class in “WHO DAT’ nation. When they arent trying to hurt guys, they are running up the score to pad Brees’ stats. I guess Peyton getting his knee blown out this season may be a little karma. haha!

  89. dboskie says: Mar 2, 2012 11:06 PM

    nfl4life77 says:
    Mar 2, 2012 9:36 PM
    Tell what’s the difference with this issue and what Pete Rose did?
    ————————————————–
    Umm – Pete’s bets didn’t get someone else injured you idiot!

  90. tombradysponytail says: Mar 2, 2012 11:10 PM

    He might want to get manzier as well…

  91. zonedogz says: Mar 3, 2012 6:58 AM

    Make him wear a bra with unpaid advertisement.

  92. jerrykill4pres says: Mar 3, 2012 8:30 AM

    Williams and Payton… Banned from the league…

    Strip super bowl trophy and rings, and call the superbowl of the 2009-2010 season null and void, or give it to the Colts.

    Strip NO ability to use the franchise tag, and take away 2nd round pick in 2012 draft, and first and second round pick in 2013 draft.

    Or, since williams was d coordinator for what? 2-3 years in NO? then say there will be no late hit, or unsportsman like penalties against opposing teams for 2-3 years in NO… So if you want, Seahawks defense could just come crashing into the huddle and light up brees… No flag!

    Just goes to show… the “who dat” nation who thought they are/were so good over the past few years, are just tainted… A joke of a team, especially when everyone but the owner knew about this! One must feel bad for Benson… He was lied to by everyone about it!

    The ‘aints are a joke… They will get no sympathy from me. Especially since everyone but Owner Tom Benson knew about this. And when your going out to intentionally hurt another player, you don’t even deserve to be in the league! What a bunch of bums! Especially Williams since he “instituted” this……

  93. opie333 says: Mar 5, 2012 9:05 AM

    I hate football and what we’ve done to it! Bunch of Liberals have tried to make it politically correct! Oh my god somebody was paid to hit another player!!! What a bunch of cry babies!

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