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Anthony Hargrove releases statement about Favre bounty

Pittsburgh Steelers v New Orleans Saints Getty Images

Former Saints defensive tackle Anthony Hargrove has been thrust into a big role in the Saints’ bounty story because of two incidents during the NFC Championship Game victory over the Vikings.

Hargrove was fined $5,000 for a hit on Brett Favre during the game and it is alleged that Saints linebacker offered $10,000 to any one of his teammates who could knock Favre out of the game. Hargrove is also quoted in a Sports Illustrated story by Peter King as saying “Favre is out of the game! Favre is done! Favre is done!” after Favre briefly left the game with an ankle injury. Hargrove released a statement to SI.com Thursday dealing with both of those events and the question of a bounty on Favre in general.

Hargrove begins by making it clear that he’s only speaking for himself and not for any other Saints players or coaches. He admits he hit Favre late and admits making those comments on the sideline, saying that he was excited because he thought Favre being out made a Saints victory more likely not because he was happy to see Favre injured. From the statement:

“I have made many mistakes in my life and have paid dearly for some of them, and the late hit and the comments were both mistakes, in my opinion. But players all over the league do the same thing every Sunday, make late hits and say stupid things. But I can say with absolute certainty that neither the late hit nor the comment have anything whatsoever to do with the issue being so hotly discussed in the media.”

So Hargrove is saying that the hit had nothing to do with trying to claim a bounty and that the comments were not excitement about someone claiming a bounty, but he doesn’t outright deny a bounty existed. That’s good because the league’s evidence and the statemtents of Gregg Williams and Mickey Loomis/Sean Payton have all provided compelling evidence to the contrary.

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51 Responses to “Anthony Hargrove releases statement about Favre bounty”
  1. joetoronto says: Mar 8, 2012 12:47 PM

    Get ready for an extended off season, loser.

  2. encroachmentor says: Mar 8, 2012 12:49 PM

    When is someone going to interview Tony Siragusa regarding his hit on Rich Gannon during the 2001 AFC playoffs that took Gannon out very early in the game? Is that any different?

  3. mavajo says: Mar 8, 2012 12:49 PM

    These guys can’t stop lying. Even after it’s already been confirmed they’ve been lying for years, they still keep doing it.

    Any guy (player, coach or otherwise) that releases a statement in the coming days denying knowledge or participating, and it’s later proven he did have knowledge and/or participate, his punishment should be increased dramatically. It’s absolutely ridiculous that these meatheads are STILL lying.

  4. touchdownroddywhite says: Mar 8, 2012 12:50 PM

    Those comments aren’t nearly as disturbing as the comment from the player demanding they be paid their bounty…

  5. thehatefulnerd says: Mar 8, 2012 12:50 PM

    Did he mention whether or not he actually RECEIVED a bounty?

  6. machester52 says: Mar 8, 2012 12:51 PM

    The Aints showing their true colors.

  7. hauts81 says: Mar 8, 2012 12:51 PM

    Clever. He can claim he wasn’t trying to collect on a bounty because his hit didn’t qualify for a reward anyway.

  8. jasonboche says: Mar 8, 2012 12:51 PM

    I don’t believe a damned word of this and I can see we’re going to be seeing one lie after another. Spare us the “I have made many mistakes in my life and have paid dearly for some of them” statements as they are irrelevant in this case.

  9. kh221 says: Mar 8, 2012 12:52 PM

    So he admits to playing dirty hitting Favre late and then screams in excitement it looked like he was knocked out of the game. But wasn’t excited he was hurt? Ok, now it makes sense.

  10. tjacks7 says: Mar 8, 2012 12:52 PM

    Probably could have go away with it of he stuck to this story and you know, the GM and coaches didn’t confess already.

  11. billionsvsmillions says: Mar 8, 2012 12:52 PM

    We get it… your “not guilty”, just as the other millions in the prison system. Got it.

  12. cliffordc05 says: Mar 8, 2012 12:53 PM

    There was a bounty in effect during the game against Minnesota but does anyone think that the bounty was more important to the players than winning the game. Players sat stupid things and do stupid things during games because they are highly emotional. The ploy of using a bounty as an incentive is perverse but I don’t believe that once the game started that players were more motivated to win than the stupid bounty. Do you think Hargrove would not have been shouting about Favre being out of the game if there were no bounty program?

  13. duhbears says: Mar 8, 2012 12:53 PM

    Open mouth, insert foot. If all of the truth comes out, this will come back to haunt him, I bet.

  14. georgebrett says: Mar 8, 2012 12:54 PM

    Over rated. Blown out of proportion and it’s football.

  15. dcbluestar says: Mar 8, 2012 12:54 PM

    Yeah. Issue a statement after you get caught? Sounds familiar.

  16. purpleguy says: Mar 8, 2012 12:54 PM

    Why when these guys make statements does it always sound like they’ve been through 5 PR spin cycles? Why not just speak in their own words — that might actually lead us to pay attention.

  17. duece5 says: Mar 8, 2012 1:09 PM

    Oh the stupid should just cease to speak!!

    This whole scam and dirty work of the saints has, and will tarnish the 2009 super bowl victory.

    If Goodell has the balls and wants to rid this behavior and make a stand against any and all of this in the future then:

    1. Lifetime ban to Williams…..( he said eff you to the league for 2 years running until he ws caught!!).

    2. One year suspensions of Payton and Loomis, and an oversight committe to allow them to enter back in the league.

    3. $1 million in fines, each, to all three of the above and

    4. loss of the next 2 years of 1st round draft picks.

    5. $10 million dollar fine to the Saints for institutionalizing the bounty program.

    6. The 2009/2010 Super Bowl victory will be vacated….no winner.

    Now, let’s see who wants to institutionalize a system in the future!

    That will have teeth.

    Goodell slapped New England on the wrist because he is SOO tight with Kraft with Belicheat…….hogwash—–MAKE IT HURT SO IT NEVER HAPPENS AGAIN!!!!!

  18. pgui88 says: Mar 8, 2012 1:09 PM

    I’m sure that loss to the falcons was also illegal to most Vikes fans

  19. granadafan says: Mar 8, 2012 1:09 PM

    “But I can say with absolute certainty that neither the late hit nor the comment have anything whatsoever to do with the issue being so HOTLY DISCUSSED in the media.”
    ==========================================

    Come on, who is he trying to kid? That statement sounds so full of legalese, it’s obvious to anyone with half a brain that it was written by his lawyer. Why do the media and blog sites contiunally fall for these kinds of issued statement spin jobs that were so clearly written by lawyers, agents, or PR teams.

  20. saint4life says: Mar 8, 2012 1:10 PM

    Why cant everyone , media too, just wait until everything comes out and then make judement?
    Im not saying things werent done, they were admitted already, but are they gonna examine eaach hit that was put on a player that caused an injury and claim every single hit was “bounty” worthy?

    Not trying to sound like the vikings fans whining but how does a team like the 49ers knock 7 running backs out of games and brag about it and not be questioned about their tactics? The 9ers beat us bad in the playoffs but I find it quite odd that the players acutally bragged about all the running backs theyve knocked out of games.

    Peter King is a joke, he’s been on Favres jock for a long time. Of course he couldnt wait until this story came out so he could give EXCUSES as to why Favre lost the NFC Champ game. And yes, it was Favre who lost the game for them. A QB make sure there are not 12 in the huddle and never makes that throw across his body especially with the game on the line.

    If they investigate every team they will find that it happens on probably 70% of them. Its nothing more than a sticker on a helmet in college football.

  21. suhnami says: Mar 8, 2012 1:14 PM

    Never heard Suh calling for his bounty….no need to pay him, he rips QB’s heads off for fun :D

  22. brianbosworthisstonecold says: Mar 8, 2012 1:17 PM

    Roger, just take away the Aint’s Lombardi Trophy and we can all move on.

  23. promickey says: Mar 8, 2012 1:19 PM

    purpleguy says:
    Mar 8, 2012 12:54 PM
    Why when these guys make statements does it always sound like they’ve been through 5 PR spin cycles? Why not just speak in their own words — that might actually lead us to pay attention.
    ————————————————–
    Speaking in their own words might also allow the public to believe that a statement is the truth.

  24. eaglesw00t says: Mar 8, 2012 1:19 PM

    Come on everyone. As much as people rag on Eagles fans for the Michael Irvin thing (cheering after a big hit) lets hear a little more Hargrove hate for cheering someone being injured.

    Personally, I dont give a crap. But if youre going to hate, hate universally. Dont be all hypocritical about it.

  25. thecayannecoon says: Mar 8, 2012 1:55 PM

    Why does everyone seem to think that knocking a player out of the game isn’t a universal thing. In every sport I know of it happens on and off the field. Especially professional sports. You are the guys who pay to see the excitement. In fact the guys who are posting these statements are problaby the biggest supporters of the big his and if the shoe was on the other foot you would be saying the same thing. So let the saints be punished for what they did and hope they don’t play your team bc they are going to have a chip on their shoulder

  26. musicman495 says: Mar 8, 2012 2:14 PM

    So Hargrove is saying that the hit had nothing to do with trying to claim a bounty and that the comments were not excitement about someone claiming a bounty, but he doesn’t outright deny a bounty existed. That’s good because the league’s evidence and the statements of Gregg Williams and Mickey Loomis/Sean Payton have all provided compelling evidence to the contrary.
    ———————————————–
    I wish the people at PFT would stop conflating the admissions by Williams, Loomis and Payton of participating in”Pay for Play,” with participating in bounties to intentionally injuring players with illegal hits. The players can deny the one, without lying in relation to what their coaches have admitted to in the other. Again I ask, other than the one or two hits on one player in one game that everyone is harping on, where is the evidence of three years of illegal hits by the Saints intending to injure?

  27. fordwuzanazi says: Mar 8, 2012 2:15 PM

    @encroachmentor

    Rich Gannon getting knocked out may have been some sort of bounty deal, but it certainly was karma. The Raiders were patting themselves on the back leading up to the playoffs about how they knocked out the most QB’s that year (I forget how many) then they ran into a real defense and their QB got pancaked and knocked out. And there were some questionable hits on Dilfer early in that game. Watch the TD to Sharpe and you’ll see a no call on a helmet to helmet hit on Dilfer.

  28. olskool711 says: Mar 8, 2012 2:16 PM

    <>

    It was one of the cheapest, cheapshots of all time.

    A cheapshot that determined the Super Bowl.

  29. farmmbig says: Mar 8, 2012 2:17 PM

    As a Vikings’ fan, I’d like to point something important out— Being our fanbase is being ridiculed and labeled as “whiners” based on one game—-

    The league is investigating a pattern of these bounties over multiple years… It’s NOT an isolated incident. Sure, the NFC Championship is front-and-center, but there’s no telling how many games were (s)tainted by these activities.

  30. xxwhodatxx says: Mar 8, 2012 2:25 PM

    Every Saints fan was thinking the same thing “Farve is out” and so what. I can’t think of any die hard fan of any team who would not be happy to see the opposing QB knocked out in a game ,not hoping he’s hurt for good but happy your team has a better chance to win. Especially on the verge of our FIRST SB and the best thing to ever happen sports wise in the area,come on. Hargrove was in the heat of the moment and he shouldn’t have to apologize for it. I don’t agree with the bounties but I also don’t think it’s as big of a deal as the media is making it out to be.

  31. rockashar says: Mar 8, 2012 2:27 PM

    Not Vikings fan but I recall watching this game with a bunch of fans and to a man noone could believe the officiating and non calls…..to me that’s the story here. I mean I have seen people breathe on Tom Brady and get flagged…..It was clear Saints could do whatever they wanted without consequences….to me the NFL must answer about the officiating!….pulling the game off Nfl network just exacerbates things

  32. ilovefoolsball says: Mar 8, 2012 2:28 PM

    I’m curious how all of the defensive players on the other 31 teams feel about this…

    On one hand I bet they’re happy it’s not happening to their team and they aren’t going to be penalized even though they know that this kind of behavior went on in their locker room, they just didn’t get caught.

    On the other hand I bet they’re pissed because that means they won’t be getting paid bonuses anymore for good defensive plays.

  33. gb4mn0 says: Mar 8, 2012 2:29 PM

    duece5 says:
    Mar 8, 2012 1:09 PM
    Oh the stupid should just cease to speak!!

    ———————————————-

    Right along with you and all the vikequeef toads with your sanctimonious silliness.

  34. conormacleod says: Mar 8, 2012 2:33 PM

    musicman495 says:
    Mar 8, 2012 2:14 PM I ask, other than the one or two hits on one player in one game that everyone is harping on, where is the evidence of three years of illegal hits by the Saints intending to injure?
    ——————————————————-
    Yep, keep denying it. Right up to the point that Goodell hands down the steepest punishments in the history of the NFL, all for “one or two hits”.

  35. conormacleod says: Mar 8, 2012 2:36 PM

    Tough choice here. Allow the general public to think you might be guilty, or release a statement and remove any doubt from their minds that you are guilty. Yep…tough choices. But hey, I’ve made mistakes in my life…

  36. captatl says: Mar 8, 2012 2:39 PM

    He made it very clear that he was speaking for himself. At no point did he deny there was a program. I believe that he is telling the truth about himself. I also believe that it is within the realm of possibility that he did not fund the bounty program, therefore he was not eligible for a payout from the bounty fund, therefore he got a gameball for his 2 total tackles (1 tackle and 1 assist) that day. Yes, everyone should get a gameball for 2 tackles and a late hit, and they should not expect a piece of the bounty if they dont fund the bounty. Note that he does not defend any former coaches or team mates. Sometimes the words you dont speak, say more than the ones you do.

  37. conormacleod says: Mar 8, 2012 2:41 PM

    If the defensive players got together and had their own little “bounty” program, then maybe not as big of a deal. But, what a few people here still don’t seem to understand, is that the Coaches were running the damn thing. If this is “ok”, then what is next? Where would the NFL be if they allowed this sort of thing? Would the NFL be as big today if Brees, Brady, Rodgers, Adrian Peterson, Manning bros, etc. were to never play again? The people that do not think this is a big deal are basically saying the NFL would be just fine if all of its stars got hurt and never played again. Well, the rich businessmen that run and own the NFL know otherwise. That’s why they are rich are you are not.

  38. suhnum1fan says: Mar 8, 2012 2:50 PM

    Corrupt city, politicians and football team not surprising at all New Orleans

  39. rushmatic says: Mar 8, 2012 3:22 PM

    Anthony Hargrove used the word “nor”?

  40. patfic15 says: Mar 8, 2012 3:28 PM

    Telling the truth…happy bc if Favre is out..they win. Favre being in the game still worked out. Get the suspensions out….let’s move on.

  41. captatl says: Mar 8, 2012 3:30 PM

    Anthony is a good guy, but he didnt write that nor did he speak those words.

  42. 69finfan says: Mar 8, 2012 4:29 PM

    As a 43 year fan of the Dolphins I have never nor will I ever root for an opposing player to be injured and taken off the field, no matter who it was. I would want my team to beat the best from the other team. If we can’t beat their best then we don’t deserve to win. Remember, success is a journey, not a destination. Go Fins!

  43. cotts1 says: Mar 8, 2012 4:57 PM

    duece5 says: Mar 8, 2012 1:09 PM

    Oh the stupid should just cease to speak!!

    This whole scam and dirty work of the saints has, and will tarnish the 2009 super bowl victory.

    If Goodell has the balls and wants to rid this behavior and make a stand against any and all of this in the future then:

    1. Lifetime ban to Williams…..( he said eff you to the league for 2 years running until he ws caught!!).

    2. One year suspensions of Payton and Loomis, and an oversight committe to allow them to enter back in the league.

    3. $1 million in fines, each, to all three of the above and

    4. loss of the next 2 years of 1st round draft picks.

    5. $10 million dollar fine to the Saints for institutionalizing the bounty program.

    6. The 2009/2010 Super Bowl victory will be vacated….no winner.

    Now, let’s see who wants to institutionalize a system in the future!

    That will have teeth.

    Goodell slapped New England on the wrist because he is SOO tight with Kraft with Belicheat…….hogwash—–MAKE IT HURT SO IT NEVER HAPPENS AGAIN!!!!!

    —————————————————

    I agree for the most part except why would Williams pay a one million fine if he has a lifetime ban?

  44. frozeninfear says: Mar 8, 2012 4:58 PM

    There is no shortage of helmet to helmet hits not called. I recall one which decided the playoff game between the Cardinals and Packers a couple of years ago.

  45. mikeelling says: Mar 8, 2012 4:59 PM

    I think they should let all teams have some kind of bounty. In the old days they all played that way. The players get payed very well and need to get tuff . If the players dont like it they dont have to play they can get a real job with the rest of us.

  46. footballrulz says: Mar 8, 2012 5:34 PM

    I sure hope the Commish issues his punishment sooner than later. This getting about as mononous as the Favre thing. Same old people writing the same old crap.

    The Super Bowl ain;t getting vacated folks.

    Let’s see if those meddling mediators will leave this one up.

  47. thecayannecoon says: Mar 8, 2012 5:48 PM

    duece5 with all due respect your an idiot how can you take something away from a team who earned it. If you have ever when to a nfl football game or wear nfl apparel then you also contribute to this scandal. See all the nfl is responsible bc all teams are doing it. Espn and other sports new all have the top ten biggest hits list and all you watch them and love it. It’s only a big deal bc they call it a scandal. The saints are going to get punished for what they did but everyone who has done this type of scandal won’t. So stop the BS about they should have all your idiotic penalties bc other teams are doing it too. In fact with your train of thought maybe we should take away all Super Bowl wins that had corruption in there organization or penalties for big his or late hits. The saints will take theres and the rest of the league will get off the hook and bad mouth the saints. Confessions were made and promisies to never do it again were made. Fine them and let the saints learn from this.

  48. thecayannecoon says: Mar 8, 2012 6:00 PM

    O and buy the way it’s b’s like you who are one sided and making the sport panzzy like. Grow some balls and read what other nfl teams had in place like the steelers ravens titins bears and redskins say. Even top qb said the same thing.

  49. n001363 says: Mar 8, 2012 7:49 PM

    Gb4mn0; you sound a little bitter about all the press we get with your former man crush quarterback. Memories of being our bitch in 09 haunting you fudge packer? Loss in NFC Championship haunting you? Bitter you pissed yourself after Giants game? loved it! That was our Superbowl. Go sleep with your cows!

  50. thecayannecoon says: Mar 8, 2012 8:47 PM

    Yea he should just not speak. He is the exact kind of panzzy that is going to ruin football

  51. grannyvi4 says: Mar 9, 2012 1:53 AM

    pgui88 says:Mar 8, 2012 1:09 PM

    I’m sure that loss to the falcons was also illegal to most Vikes fans
    ————————–
    Oh for cyring out loud…really??? No, that loss to Atlanta wasn’t and isn’t considered “illegal” in your terms. It was heartbreaking and frustrating but if I remember correctly, the Falcons didn’t have a bounty program in place, nor did they have nearly the number of illegal hits on our QB (if any)that NO had, and the officiating was actually fair.

    No, the Vikings, like Plax, shot themselves in their own leg with plenty of miscues from coaches (Denny Green’s take-a-knee call before the end of the half) and poor execution of plays.

    I’m not calling for the NO’s SB title to be vacated by the league, but it’s nice that finally our complaints from that NFCCG are now being taken seriously. In my mind, NO’s victory in that game is tainted. I do think that, even with our own mistakes, we could have won that game except for the late hits, and other penalties, that weren’t called by the officials. However, I’m not going to sit here and tell anyone that the bounty system had anything to do with their victory over the Colts that year.

    So, just stop with your nonsense.

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