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NFLPA says it has still not seen evidence of “pay-to-injure” program

Jonathan Vilma Portrait Shoot Getty Images

As expected, the NFL Players Association has issued a statement in response to the punishment imposed earlier in the day on four members of the 2009-11 Saints.  As expected, the NFLPA disagrees with the suspensions of Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma (one year), Packers defensive end Anthony Hargrove (eight games), Saints defensive end Will Smith (four games), and Brown linebacker Scott Fujita (three games).

“After seeing the NFL’s decision letters, the NFLPA has still not received any detailed or specific evidence from the league of these specific players’ involvement in an alleged pay-to-injure program,” the union said.  “We have made it clear that punishment without evidence is not fair.  We have spoken with our players and their representatives and we will vigorously protect and pursue all options on their behalf.”

As a threshold matter, “vigorous protection” includes an immediate appeal of the decision.  (More on that soon.)

Regarding the NFLPA’s allegation that “detailed or specific evidence” has not been received, the question is whether the NFL didn’t give the union anything, whether the union hasn’t given everything, and/or whether what the league has provided has been regarded as deficient.  Either way, here’s hoping that all of the evidence comes out, so that the public can assess whether or not the suspensions were indeed justified.

Or not.

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105 Responses to “NFLPA says it has still not seen evidence of “pay-to-injure” program”
  1. lolb23 says: May 2, 2012 1:11 PM

    Goodell has and that’s all that matters. Suck it, Saints.

  2. lolb23 says: May 2, 2012 1:12 PM

    Either way, here’s hoping that all of the evidence comes out, so that the public can assess whether or not the suspensions were indeed justified.
    _______________________________

    AAAAAAAAAHAHAHA! Too bad “the public” has nothing to do with the justice system. Losers.

  3. flannlv says: May 2, 2012 1:12 PM

    How many offensive players were suspended? None. Saints will roll this year.

  4. briguy5 says: May 2, 2012 1:13 PM

    Just out of curiousity, does the NFLPA represent the targets of this bounty program or just the perpetrators?

  5. tamvu says: May 2, 2012 1:14 PM

    what about the one where vilma tosses 10k cash into the middle of the circle jerk to see if anyone can claim it by knocking out favre? i mean…i can see how that’s a misunderstanding…if by knock-out, he actually really meant “wrap up really hard within the confines of the rules and spirit of the game”

  6. lowender75 says: May 2, 2012 1:15 PM

    In that case, what is Gregg Williams apologizing for then?

  7. sledgehorn says: May 2, 2012 1:16 PM

    I don’t see what the NFL would gain by faking this whole thing like the NFLPA says. Why in the world would they fake all these allegations if they weren’t positive that it all happened?

  8. rkab22 says: May 2, 2012 1:17 PM

    This will backfire on Smith and the players union if they push it too much and further details become public.

  9. dvdman123 says: May 2, 2012 1:18 PM

    I really will feel bad for Goodell if he has to present the Saints with this season’s Lombardi in of all place their home stadium. It’s a real possibility.

  10. therpol says: May 2, 2012 1:18 PM

    Note to NFLPA: When the coaches admit there was a pay to injure program, and when your members (Thanks Anthony Hargrove for a signed statement. Love R. G.) admit there was a program, there was a program. Isn’t your bigger problem figuring out what to tell the non Saints members you represent why you aren’t protecting their interests as well in this situation? Conflict of interest as a union and those pesky concussion lawsuits is a bish.

  11. footballhistorian says: May 2, 2012 1:18 PM

    Typical union double-speak…The coaches that have been punished weren’t the ones that went out on the field and laid the wood to the targets. The union is in effect, asking for video of a player agreeing to perform the act as proof. I was going to ask, but here’s more evidence of what a bunch of tools they are…

  12. talkingheadsknowall says: May 2, 2012 1:18 PM

    and the league has seen no sign of intelligence from the president of the players union either…….

  13. mushin9 says: May 2, 2012 1:18 PM

    Just to be preemptive…

    (enter clever name here) needs an explanation.

    Now that we’ve got that out of the way…

  14. garyman1 says: May 2, 2012 1:19 PM

    So the NFLPA is suggesting that Saints coaches implemented a bounty program (which William apologized for…thus admitting guilt) which no players executed ?
    A bounty program with no player involvement ?

  15. dryzzt23 says: May 2, 2012 1:19 PM

    Why is it that both players and the NFLPA feel that everyone is accountable to them yet they are accountable to no one?

    If a player does alcohol/drugs or makes stupid financial decisions it is always the NFL’s fault b/c it did not provide counseling or education regarding alcohol/drug abuse and financial planning.

    I have yet to see a player be accountable for his actions. As an adult male, he knows right from wrong, what is legal and what is not, and what his priorities should be, especially since he has an opportunities that most Americans would give both their arms for.

    This is the mentality that you get with unions.

  16. fijabbersman345 says: May 2, 2012 1:19 PM

    Oh, does the NFLPA want an explanation too? Looks like Drew Brees has a new BFF

  17. damoss34 says: May 2, 2012 1:19 PM

    You do realize that only 2 of the 4 players actually still play for the Saints, and only 1, Vilma, has had any real impact for them recently. Add to the fact that the Saints signed 2 of the best LB’s in the offseason, and this suspension won’t hurt them at all.. So, Suck it, lolb23.. Maybe have a clue before posting

  18. acetw says: May 2, 2012 1:20 PM

    @lolb23 – Goodell has “what?” exactly? This is the beauty of it, if you answer anything but “I don’t know”, then you’re either a liar or a fool. I’m going to guess that you’ll go ‘full out’ and tell me what all Godell has, even though everybody including yourself knows you’ll be lying through your teeth.

  19. randomguy9999 says: May 2, 2012 1:20 PM

    Signed confessions aren’t enough? The nflolpa will forever be a joke…..

  20. rickvaldez says: May 2, 2012 1:20 PM

    And the NFLPA had no problem signing off on the league punishing the Redskins and Cowboys when it was clear no rule was broken.

  21. nineroutsider says: May 2, 2012 1:21 PM

    The NFLPA is really turning me off to sports unions. I’ve never paid attention to how unions behave, but their “members above all else” motto is making me sick. I know why unions exist, but still.

    The league had to expose the Saints, one of it’s own members. They didn’t want to, but they did it. They probably didn’t do it for 100% virtuous motives, but nonetheless they did it.

    The rest of the players should slap their union down on this one.

  22. matt14gg says: May 2, 2012 1:22 PM

    Seems to me the appeal on this one is pretty simple. The coaching staff, and Gregg Williams in particular, ‘…ordered the Code Red…’. The players just went along with what was ordered by the coaches. Any player, in any sport, knows you do what the coaches tell you or they will find someone else that will. I’m not saying it’s right and I’m not saying they’ll win, but that has to be the argument.

  23. crazycane says: May 2, 2012 1:22 PM

    Take the blind fold off then!!

  24. bearsandjazz says: May 2, 2012 1:22 PM

    As if the admissions from Williams and Payton weren’t Evidence enough. I’m surprised they aren’t blaming it on the Cream an clear, or that Williams and Payton misremembered what happened. The NFLPA is nothing but Ambulance chasers, they are that defense attorney who knows their client is guilty but find the loopholes for them to be innocent…it’s sickening! The more money you make the better your chances of being innocent when proven guilty!

  25. hairpie says: May 2, 2012 1:22 PM

    Hahaha…. what color is the grass in their world.

  26. whatnojets says: May 2, 2012 1:24 PM

    (More on that soon.)

    You are killing me with the supsense!

    I need to know now, not later!

  27. dryzzt23 says: May 2, 2012 1:24 PM

    If the players, Vilma, Hargrove, Fujita, and Smith lose in court, they MUST be forced to pay the NFL’s legal fees.

    The players acted in concert with the coaches and knew what they were doing, therefore they must be held accountable. If they say they were “just following orders” from their coaches then they should be forced out of the NFL if they are weak-minded enough to follow whatever instruction anyone tells them.

    These players bring disrespect on their team and the NFL and I am so glad that they have been severely punished

  28. lolb23 says: May 2, 2012 1:24 PM

    And OJ Simpson is still looking for the “real killer”. Just sayin.

  29. dzor22 says: May 2, 2012 1:25 PM

    Gee– I guess nothing really happened then? The NFL made all of this up or is this more Union BS posturing? Do the math.

  30. cwmorga says: May 2, 2012 1:25 PM

    @lolb23 says: May 2, 2012 1:11 PM

    Goodell has and that’s all that matters. Suck it, Saints.
    ————————

    Be careful taking pleasure in this. Your team and your players might be the next victim of Goddell’s unchecked ego.

  31. phil325 says: May 2, 2012 1:25 PM

    How about the NFLPA protecting the players these jerks injured? They don”t say a word about them. What a sorry organization. Bozos got less than they deserved.

  32. lks311 says: May 2, 2012 1:26 PM

    When salaries are cut because the NFL has to pay all defendants, thus, resulting in lower team-by-team caps, then the NFLPA will “see” the evidence.

  33. ejmat2 says: May 2, 2012 1:26 PM

    LMAO. Hey NFLPA, go read Anthony Hargrove’s statement. Is that enough evidence for you? Also, it’s called a “bounty” program. Not pay to injure. Stop trying to play on words.

  34. veetan says: May 2, 2012 1:28 PM

    Even so, Vilma is now 30 & oft injured. Plus, he’s already been replaced by Curtis Loftin who is in his mid 20’s and very, very good. Will Smith is only out 4 games. You know what that means, don’t cha know?

    Goodell will have to stand on the stage in N.O. in February and hand the Saints their second Lombardi trophy.

    CAN’T WAIT!!!!

  35. smirk11 says: May 2, 2012 1:28 PM

    No, actually that isn’t all that matters.

    There is an actual appeal process for players (not coaches) and they have the court system as well, as they did in the StarCaps case.

    At some point, Goodell will have to provide something to someone besides “We have evidence and its awesome. Trust me. What? You want to see it? No. You can’t see it. But its good!”

  36. klunge says: May 2, 2012 1:28 PM

    I have still not seen evidence of competent leadership in the NFLPA.

  37. jenniferxxx says: May 2, 2012 1:29 PM

    Confessions don’t count as evidence ?

  38. ilovefoolsball says: May 2, 2012 1:29 PM

    The NFL is abusing their collective bargaining agreement by refusing to provide evidence of any wrongdoing aka a “pay to injure” scheme.
    Despite what ever personal reasons one may have, no one should be unjustly prosecuted without there being due process and a fair presentation of indisputable evidence that goes beyond one man’s word.
    No one ever admitted to a pay to injure scheme and there has been no proof that anything such program existed other than someone’s word. How does anyone know that someone didn’t just exaggerate the pay for performance system into a pay to injure system because they had a gripe with the Saints?

    Obviously there are a lot of people on this site who are fans of other teams who most likely got the SNOT beat out of them by the Saints that are as happy that this is happening to the Saints without evidence as I will be happy if the Vikings leave that dump of a stadium and how happy I am that the Cowboys are still a joke even with that shiny new stadium and everyone always picking them to go to the superbowl every year.
    Your opinions don’t really matter because let’s face it, you’re a bunch of losers and probably really gross guys that women get up and walk away from when you sit at the bar in their vicinity but good luck in the future.

  39. floriohaslosthisedgyroots says: May 2, 2012 1:30 PM

    The NFLPA has its own resources to determine the evidence. With admissions from players as to the extent of their own involvement in the bounties, how can the association say it doesn’t know. It knows but is just playing the game. curious how they will fight tooth and nail on some issues buit have left issues like disabled retired players by the wayside.

  40. patriots123456 says: May 2, 2012 1:30 PM

    Can the NFLPA be that stupid?

    Their own union members testified it existed as well as the coaches.

    What do they think it was filmed for them to watch?

    They have bigger problems than evidence. If they represent Vilma, players who were hurt may sue the NFLPA saying they are defending the people who caused their injuries. This is a can of worm the NFLPA doesn’t want to open.

  41. kathyisintheroom says: May 2, 2012 1:30 PM

    There is no evidence. This is all the work of a power crazed dictator that just wants to build up brownie points for the lawsuits from former players.

    I don’t know which is more pathetic: Roger Goodell, or the nimits that agree with this witch hunt and make comments like “Saints cheated” or deserve an *

  42. whatevnfl says: May 2, 2012 1:30 PM

    “Hargrove submitted a signed declaration to the league that established not only the existence of the program at the Saints, but also that he knew about and participated in it.”

    How is that not detailed or specific?

  43. nicksabansanahole says: May 2, 2012 1:33 PM

    It’s just like spygate. Goodell rules and then destroys the evidence so nobody can say anything without proof. What a “leader.” If there is nothing to be worried about then why isn’t he transparent enough so all of the haters have nothing to stand on. Why? Because he is an egomaniac with a god complex.
    I think he has done some good things for the game but he has not earned the right to rule without explanation or proof of everything.

  44. catquick says: May 2, 2012 1:33 PM

    How about the evidence of Williams and Hargrove admitting to it? Doesn’t that count. There’s an old joke where the judge sais “not guilty” and the defendant sais “Does that mean I get to keep the money?” This is similar, but not funny.

  45. gus1824 says: May 2, 2012 1:35 PM

    If NFLPA has not found evidence,how can they let this happen.

  46. tropicpurple says: May 2, 2012 1:35 PM

    Here’s two pieces of evidence:

    1) Gregg Williams admission
    2) The NFC tape between the Vikings & Saints

  47. floridafootballguru says: May 2, 2012 1:35 PM

    This is the one side of Goodell that I REALLY disagree with. Assuming that the Saints’ players actions have been documented and corroborated, then the punishment is justified. What you CANNOT do, however, is arbitrarily say that someone did something without showing any evidence to prove your case, and then arbitrarily decide punishment.

    This honestly makes me stand on the Saints’ players side because if the evidence is there, why hasn’t it been provided the players’ representatives and the NFLPA? Keeping the waters muddied like this only makes the players’ case look much more believable. Bad posturing on what should be an open and shut matter.

  48. tommyribs says: May 2, 2012 1:36 PM

    Goodell is Judge Smails, and the NFLPA is his nephew Spalding.

    Spalding/NFLPA: ” I want a hamburger, a hot-dog, and concrete proof…

    Goodell/Smails: “You’ll get nothing and like it!”

  49. feck12a says: May 2, 2012 1:36 PM

    the nflpa has no credability. they had no problems signing off on penalizing the skins/boys for breaking a rule that didn’t exist, now with the saints you have a situation were coaches are apologizing for what they did and the union says there’s no evidence?

  50. sterling7 says: May 2, 2012 1:36 PM

    Tell the NFLPA to watch film of the New Orleans Saints Minnesota Vikings 2010 NFL Championship game………………………………the one the NFL Network won’t show!!!

  51. patriots123456 says: May 2, 2012 1:36 PM

    Rest assure this is not going to go away.

    This is union member against union member and the NFLPA has to represent all dues paying members.

    If they take a side the other side will sue. This is a no win situation for the NFLPA and maybe the League in general. This is going to get uglier and uglier. The lawyers must be salivating.

  52. patriots123456 says: May 2, 2012 1:38 PM

    Why don’t they just solve it the old fashioned way.

    With Hookers and Cash!

  53. vipod4ever says: May 2, 2012 1:39 PM

    (Brees in court, wanting an explanation from Col.Goodell)

    Brees: *Colonel Goodell, why did you order those suspensions?*
    Judge Florio: You *don’t* have to answer that question!
    Col. Goodell: I’ll answer the question!
    [to Brees]
    Col. Goodell: You want answers?
    Brees: I think I’m entitled to.
    Col. Goodell: *You want answers?*
    Brees: *I want the truth!*
    Col. Goodell: *You can’t handle the truth!*
    [pauses]
    Col. Goodell: Son, we live in a league that has bounties, and those bounties have to be guarded by me. Who’s gonna do it? You? You, DeMaurice? I have a greater responsibility than you could possibly fathom. You weep for Vilma & Payton, and you curse the NFL. You have that luxury. You have the luxury of not knowing what I know. That Vilma’s suspension, while tragic, probably saved the NFL millions of dollars in lawsuits. And my existence, while grotesque and incomprehensible to you, saves money to the league owners. You don’t want the truth because deep down in places you don’t talk about at parties, you want me running the NFL, you need me running the NFL. We use words like honor, code, loyalty. We use these words as the backbone of a life spent defending the NFL. You use them as a punch line. I have neither the time nor the inclination to explain myself to a man who rises and sleeps under blanket (with Nyquil in him) of the very league that I provide, and then questions the manner in which I provide it. I would rather you just said thank you, and went on your way, Otherwise, I suggest you pick up a football, and toss it up you’re pro-bowl a**. Either way, I don’t give a damn what you think you are entitled to.
    Brees: Did you order the Bounty Suspensions?
    Col. Goodell: I did the job I…
    Brees: Did you order the Bounty Suspensions?
    Col. Goodell: *You’re Goddamn right I did!*

  54. mullman7675 says: May 2, 2012 1:40 PM

    lolb23 says:
    May 2, 2012 1:11 PM
    Goodell has and that’s all that matters. Suck it, Saints.

     34 31 
    ———————————————————————————
    BULLSH_ _!!
    THe hit on warner was legal, the hit on Favre was legal. This whole thing is a joke and is indicative of our soft-bellied culture. What a shame. Also, the commish was quick to destroy the evidence of the patriots blatant disregard for the ethics of the game, yet it looks like the saints evidence will be on full public display. Another joke. Kraft, Rooney and Mara all have the commish in their pocket and they use him to dispense “justice” to the other teams in the league. It’s transparent and sad.

    PS- NOT a saints fan…

  55. neilnixon says: May 2, 2012 1:40 PM

    This is going to be sad and a bit comical for Goodell if this ever got to court.

    Question from NFLPA Attorney: “Aren’t your game officials responsible for inforcing all rules, including illegal hits during games?”

    Answer from NFL: “Yes”

    Question from NFLPA Attorney: “How many illegal hits were Jonathan Vilma, Will Smith, etc. flagged for during games?

    Answer from NFL: “Well, none. But that’s not the point!”

    Question from NFLPA Attorney: “Don’t you also have a system for fining or suspending players after the games for illegal hits that were not caught by the officials?

    Answer from NFL: “Well, yes. But that’s not the point!”

    Question from NFLPA Attorney: “We’re Vilma and/or Smith every fined or suspended after any games for illegal hits?

    Answer from NFL: “Well…no…but that’s not the point!”

    Question from NFLPA Attorney: “How many players were ever injured or carted off the field because of illegal hits on these Saints players that your officials and you in-office disciplinarians missed at the time or immediately afterwards?

    Answer from NFL: “Well…none, but that’s not the point!?

    Question from NFLPA Attorney: “Then exactly what evidence do you have in your possession that would warrant a year-long suspension for Jonathan Vilma?

    Answer from NFL: “Trust us, we have the evidence…but we don’t need to show it.”

  56. chawk12thman says: May 2, 2012 1:40 PM

    The Union and players say there is no written contract and bank transfers showing payment with notations that they were for bountygate, thus, no credible evidence………..I don’t agree.

  57. phillyforlife says: May 2, 2012 1:42 PM

    acetw says: May 2, 2012 1:20 PM

    @lolb23 – Goodell has “what?” exactly? This is the beauty of it, if you answer anything but “I don’t know”, then you’re either a liar or a fool. I’m going to guess that you’ll go ‘full out’ and tell me what all Godell has, even though everybody including yourself knows you’ll be lying through your teeth.
    ——————————————————
    Ok so I will answer he has the confessions of Greg W. and S.Payton and the Saints GM .Does he really need more ?

  58. korikill says: May 2, 2012 1:43 PM

    So why isn’t the NFLPA ‘protecting the rights and welfare’ of the players who were the TARGETS of the bounty system?

  59. duece5 says: May 2, 2012 1:43 PM

    kathyisintheroom says:May 2, 2012 1:30 PM

    There is no evidence. This is all the work of a power crazed dictator that just wants to build up brownie points for the lawsuits from former players.

    I don’t know which is more pathetic: Roger Goodell, or the nimits that agree with this witch hunt and make comments like “Saints cheated” or deserve an

    duece5 says:

    Kathy…..you come across as very ignorant of the facts.

    I had to counter your previous comment, and see fit to tell you to STOP SNIFFING GLUE!!

    It’s ok to love your team, but really??

    they admitted to it…..YOUR OWN COACHES AND VILMA!!!! And, your joke of a GM.

    You did it for 3 years!!!!

    Goodell is lucky he didn’t take the trophy AWAY from your team, which is certainly within his right.

    You can’t control the asterisk*…..IT’S ALREADY THERE ON YOUR TEAM.

  60. justrunit11 says: May 2, 2012 1:43 PM

    What of course they’ll say they have no evidence. DREW BREES IS IN IT.

  61. 11jlacy says: May 2, 2012 1:44 PM

    Vilma for a season with out concrete proof u got to be tripping.
    STILL WANT STOP US!!!!!

  62. niquebchillin says: May 2, 2012 1:44 PM

    We won’t see the evidence, the same way we will never see what was on them spygate tapes …

  63. ajpurp says: May 2, 2012 1:48 PM

    Did anyone ever think that the reason the nfl has not given over the important evidence is because they knew a lawsuit might me coming with these player suspensions? You get discovery but it doesn’t mean you give over your whole case, and the nfl certainly has top lawyers

  64. finfan49 says: May 2, 2012 1:49 PM

    good release all this non info to all the fans or PFT , have all the nfl players seen all this non evidence or just the E -Board ? why not release it there’s nothing there ! nothing detailed or specific

  65. mushin9 says: May 2, 2012 1:50 PM

    matt14gg says: May 2, 2012 1:22 PM

    Seems to me the appeal on this one is pretty simple. The coaching staff, and Gregg Williams in particular, ‘…ordered the Code Red…’. The players just went along with what was ordered by the coaches. Any player, in any sport, knows you do what the coaches tell you or they will find someone else that will. I’m not saying it’s right and I’m not saying they’ll win, but that has to be the argument.
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Arguing, “But they told me to do it” is not a valid defense.

  66. cliffordc05 says: May 2, 2012 1:51 PM

    If the NFLPA had a signed confession from each of the four players facing suspension it would claim that there was not enough evidence.

  67. cwmorga says: May 2, 2012 1:54 PM

    @tamvu says: May 2, 2012 1:14 PM

    what about the one where vilma tosses 10k cash into the middle of the circle jerk to see if anyone can claim it by knocking out favre? i mean…i can see how that’s a misunderstanding…if by knock-out, he actually really meant “wrap up really hard within the confines of the rules and spirit of the game”
    ————————–

    So you saw that? Or have video? Or audio? Bueller?

    OH, I SEE, you heard that happened. From a source yet to be named. Glad we finally have “proof”.

  68. linemanguy74 says: May 2, 2012 1:55 PM

    Somebody please draw the idiots a picture so they can understand what is going on !!!!!!!!!

  69. mushin9 says: May 2, 2012 1:55 PM

    floridafootballguru says: May 2, 2012 1:35 PM

    …. What you CANNOT do, however, is arbitrarily say that someone did something without showing any evidence to prove your case, and then arbitrarily decide punishment.
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Sure you can. This is not a court hearing where due process is the end-all-be-all. This is the system of punishment negotiated by the league and the NFLPA. I’m not saying it’s right. But, by the letter of the CBA the players agreed to Goodell absolutely CAN do it just like this.

  70. skolvikings2011 says: May 2, 2012 1:59 PM

    They have eyewitness statements from several sources, and collaborating evidence in the audio-tape given to the league. Circumstantial as the audio-tape is (it alone does not prove the system, but backs up the tone), many men have been put away with much less evidence than the NFL has. Eyewitness statements are admissible in court as evidence.

  71. 49ers1970 says: May 2, 2012 2:01 PM

    What evidence do they need? A taped confession from the players that were a part of it?
    The NFLPApushed player safety and were on strike last season for more player safety. Now, they want to stand up for players they know were part of a bounty program.

  72. neilnixon says: May 2, 2012 2:03 PM

    For you people that repeatedly keep saying “the coaches, the players admitted to a bounty system” I offer you a challenge: Please cut and paste exactly what Williams, Payton, Hargrove, etc. said that “admitted” they had a pay to injure system???

    If you can’t find it then quit using this as a justification for Commisar Goodell’s actions!!

    The reality is…you can’t find those admissions, so shut up!

  73. hairpie says: May 2, 2012 2:04 PM

    Lawyer: Were you a part of an illegal bounty system that encouraged and rewarded illegal hits in order to injure key players and therefor directly alter the outcome of games?

    Saints player: Yes

    Lawyer: No further questions.

  74. matzahballz says: May 2, 2012 2:04 PM

    Is this DeMorice Smith who can’t see it or just the rest of the idiotic reps in the NFLPA? He offered $10K!!!! Enough said.

  75. nycruuuzin says: May 2, 2012 2:09 PM

    I don’t understand how the PA is fighting for these guys? On one hand there fighting for player safety and saying the Owners and the Commish don’t care. While on the other hand defending players who were paying/being paid bonuses to injure opposing players. It makes no sense.

  76. jgedgar70 says: May 2, 2012 2:10 PM

    damoss34 says:
    May 2, 2012 1:19 PM

    You do realize that only 2 of the 4 players actually still play for the Saints, and only 1, Vilma, has had any real impact for them recently. Add to the fact that the Saints signed 2 of the best LB’s in the offseason, and this suspension won’t hurt them at all.. So, Suck it, lolb23.. Maybe have a clue before posting
    _____

    How about the fact that they will be coached by half a coaching staff? If you think this has no effect, you’re dreaming.

    Week 2 – Panthers 49, Saints 21 (with 14 of those coming in the 4th quarter after Carolina has put its 5th-stringers in)

  77. blondebombr says: May 2, 2012 2:10 PM

    @vipod4eva Holy Moly.

    That is the coolest thing I’ve ever read.

    I want you to go about your day knowing that is the greatest post anyone ever made in any forum anywhere.

  78. dvdman123 says: May 2, 2012 2:11 PM

    You would have thought the Saints had committed a felony…..this whole bounty is STILL a joke. As far I can see Favre and Warner are enjoying their retirements and walking nicely. Time to move along and put this rest.

  79. jelliot1978 says: May 2, 2012 2:17 PM

    The NFLPA has to, by law, defend its members. If one of the targets had issues with the ‘bounties’ then they would also have to aid them.

    To those saying we need to see the evidence or due process, this is not a criminal or civil court. It is a company punishing its own employees and they are not required to divulge the information to us.

    The players who were suspended may need to tread carefully, in particular Vilma, because if they go to federal court for this the evidence divulged in that case could be used against them in civil or criminal court. It is unlikely but still possible that a criminal charge could be brought for paying to inflict bodily harm on someone.

  80. bigdog3838 says: May 2, 2012 2:20 PM

    What else did you expect from a union? All they are good for now-a-days is getting crappy employees and employees that break the rules, their jobs back. They have absolutely no use in the modern era. There used to be a need for them but not anymore. They are a joke as are their supporters. Just go to work, do a good job, do what is asked of you and don’t break the rules. It’s not that hard!

  81. GHOSTHOUSE says: May 2, 2012 2:20 PM

    Did anyone just see TMZ broke that Junior Seau was shot and killed???

  82. mdd913 says: May 2, 2012 2:24 PM

    I’m a Saints fan and I couldn’t be happier with the outcome. These player suspensions have almost zero effect on the Saints’ chances in 2012.

    I still want to see the evidence. This is not a Saints issue, this is something that ALL fans of football and the NFL should be interested in.

    Why? Because your sport being run by a person who knowingly lied to Congress about concussions. … Who burned evidence in the Spygate case. … And who is still now refusing to provide evidence that any Saints player or coach (other than Gregg Williams) was involved in a pay-to-injure scheme.

    Goodell is slimy and needs to be gone from the game before he makes things even worse than they already are.

  83. ejmat2 says: May 2, 2012 2:29 PM

    neilnixon says:
    May 2, 2012 2:03 PM
    For you people that repeatedly keep saying “the coaches, the players admitted to a bounty system” I offer you a challenge: Please cut and paste exactly what Williams, Payton, Hargrove, etc. said that “admitted” they had a pay to injure system???
    ———————————–
    Hargrove signed a statement stating there was a system and he participated in the system.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/sports/redskins/nfl-statement-text-on-saints-bounty-penalties/2012/05/02/gIQA6JBiwT_story.html

    What more do you want? They did it! It happened!

  84. rubberinnertube says: May 2, 2012 2:30 PM

    neilnixon,
    attempting to injure or maim with preconceived planning and direct intent is still a violation; whether you were actually successful in acheiving your goal or not.

    This isn’t a case of regular law, but I would think the premise is somewhat similar. At least that must be the route the NFL is taking.

  85. sloppydogg says: May 2, 2012 2:31 PM

    So you all have seen the results can we move on now, you got justice people………lmao……….sorry just had a moment. We started out with 22 players being suspended and the results came out that only 4 will get punish two of them no longer play with the saints. I say justices has been served. We are going to crack some a _ _ you heard……………..omg

  86. mdd913 says: May 2, 2012 2:35 PM

    ejmat2 says: May 2, 2012 2:29 PM
    Hargrove signed a statement stating there was a system and he participated in the system.

    —————————————————————–

    Gregg Williams signed a statement too. A statement that the NFL wrote for him after Goodell decided that his apology was not contrite enough.

    This is all verifiable fact.

    It’s not hard to imagine Hargrove was also pressured into signing a similar “confession.”

  87. sportmentary says: May 2, 2012 2:37 PM

    Can the NFLPA be taken seriously? They are huge supporters or deniers of criminal activity. They are scumbags!

  88. rayburns says: May 2, 2012 2:38 PM

    From Peter King:

    Former U.S. attorney Mary Jo White, who successfully prosecuted noted mob boss John Gotti for murder and racketeering in 1992, was brought in by the league to pore over all the evidence. White reviewed the findings of the league’s internal investigations (one in early 2010, and a renewed investigation early this year) and reportedly told the league its case is solid.

  89. genericuser8888 says: May 2, 2012 3:04 PM

    The NFL has actual videotape of Ndamukong Suh pushing a player’s head into the ground and stomping on his arm. He initially came out and denied this behavior was wrong, even when faced with video. His was suspended 2 games without pay.

    The NFL has actual video of Albert Haynesworth stomping on a helmet-less player’s head. The player had to have stitches. Haynesworth’s penalty was 5 games without pay.

    Jonathon Vilma’s actions are not on video tape. All the evidence presented so far seem to show that his actions caused no on-field cart offs or injuries of any type. His penalty is a full year suspension.

    Stay classy NFL.

  90. zanderbough says: May 2, 2012 3:10 PM

    NFPLA = giant hypocrites.

  91. mdd913 says: May 2, 2012 3:13 PM

    rayburns says: May 2, 2012 2:38 PM

    From Peter King:

    Former U.S. attorney Mary Jo White, who successfully prosecuted noted mob boss John Gotti for murder and racketeering in 1992, was brought in by the league to pore over all the evidence. White reviewed the findings of the league’s internal investigations (one in early 2010, and a renewed investigation early this year) and reportedly told the league its case is solid.

    ————————————————————–

    Not surprised that the league would release this. So Peter King heard it from somebody who heard it from somebody who heard it from somebody.

    That about sums up this whole case. A whole lot of hearsay and practically nothing to back it up.

    Goodell is a weasel and anybody who is a fan of any NFL team should be seriously concerned about his approach to running the league.

  92. albristo says: May 2, 2012 3:13 PM

    To everyone who are on the NFLPA for supporting these suspended players in their appeal, they are not supporting the activity that these players are accused of, they are appealing the fact that the NFL is handing out a punishment without supplying the NFLPA with evidence to support the suspension. I think the NFLPA is looking at the bigger picture with this case. If the NFL gets their way, then there will be a precident that the NFL can suspend and punish anyone they please without supplying any evidence whatsoever. Something the NFLPA certainly does not want in the future, as the union would become powerless to support the players in any case versus the NFL.

  93. mashoaf says: May 2, 2012 3:23 PM

    Good luck at the hearings. Remember Roger Clemons when you decide to lie to investigators. They will come at you

  94. jcf78 says: May 2, 2012 3:42 PM

    Nflpa, last time I checked there have been admissions that this happened!!!!! I understand you protecting players, but to question if it happened after admissions COME ON!!!!!! who is your advisor Bill Clinton lol

  95. ejmat2 says: May 2, 2012 3:45 PM

    mdd913 says:
    May 2, 2012 2:35 PM
    ejmat2 says: May 2, 2012 2:29 PM
    Hargrove signed a statement stating there was a system and he participated in the system.

    —————————————————————–

    Gregg Williams signed a statement too. A statement that the NFL wrote for him after Goodell decided that his apology was not contrite enough.

    This is all verifiable fact.

    It’s not hard to imagine Hargrove was also pressured into signing a similar “confession.”
    ——————————–
    Right! I could see Hargrove being bullied by the Commissioner. Not very likely. The fact is the NFL will not get away with suspending players unless they had solid evidence. All you have at this point is an assumption on your part. I was asked to provide a link, I did. Done deal.

  96. vikingamericann says: May 2, 2012 3:45 PM

    It is so sad to see so many people accept hearsay, rumor, and innuendo as evidence. Thankfully, the NFLPA is not so foolish. The NFL has to present the evidence they have to the players. That do get to say we have and that’s all there is to it. Too many of you are just sheep follow the crowd, go which ever way the wind blows, and never question authority? I shutter to think, what the may become of American civil liberties if you the majority of America.

  97. BernardPollardIsAnAss says: May 2, 2012 3:53 PM

    Why would a Wookie want to live on Endor with a bunch of Ewoks? You must acquit!

    That is about how the NFLPA and Drew Brees are starting to sound at this point.

  98. mdd913 says: May 2, 2012 4:13 PM

    ejmat2 says: May 2, 2012 3:45 PM

    mdd913 says:
    May 2, 2012 2:35 PM
    ejmat2 says: May 2, 2012 2:29 PM
    Hargrove signed a statement stating there was a system and he participated in the system.

    —————————————————————–

    Gregg Williams signed a statement too. A statement that the NFL wrote for him after Goodell decided that his apology was not contrite enough.

    This is all verifiable fact.

    It’s not hard to imagine Hargrove was also pressured into signing a similar “confession.”
    ——————————–
    Right! I could see Hargrove being bullied by the Commissioner. Not very likely. The fact is the NFL will not get away with suspending players unless they had solid evidence. All you have at this point is an assumption on your part. I was asked to provide a link, I did. Done deal.

    ———————————————————-

    And here is a link that shows Gregg Williams apology was written by the NFL:

    [audio src="http://danpatrick.directv.com.edgesuite.net/Podcast/DP-Hr2_04-06-2012_stream.mp3" /]

    If Goodell would force Gregg Williams into signing an apology he did not write, why is it so hard to believe he would do the same to Anthony Hargrove?

    Please answer honestly.

  99. 49erstim says: May 2, 2012 4:21 PM

    If only somebody had recorded Gregg Williams while he was issuing his injury orders… I mean… “defensive assignments”. That would be all the proof we’d need! Blast our infernal luck! Oh well….. :)

  100. mdd913 says: May 2, 2012 4:29 PM

    49erstim says: May 2, 2012 4:21 PM

    If only somebody had recorded Gregg Williams while he was issuing his injury orders… I mean… “defensive assignments”. That would be all the proof we’d need!

    —————————————————————

    The issue is not whether Gregg Williams promoted the idea….the issue is whether the players actually participated.

    A grand total of zero “cart-offs” and zero “knock outs” over the three years Williams presided over the defense would seem to answer that question with a resounding “no.”

    That is real, concrete, provable evidence….something which the NFL’s investigation was NEVER able to produce on their side of the issue.

  101. neilnixon says: May 2, 2012 4:54 PM

    You people that keep citing the so-called “confessions” of Hargrove and Williams are, like the media, interpreting those statements to mean they are admitting to bounties. Can you actually read??? They are apologizing for taking part in a “pay for performance” program, which other teams have also been involved in (see Green Bay in 2007). Again, please show me precise language where anyone has said they were part of a program to injure someone?

    As for rubbinnertube’s statement:
    “attempting to injure or maim with preconceived planning and direct intent is still a violation; whether you were actually successful in acheiving your goal or not.

    This isn’t a case of regular law, but I would think the premise is somewhat similar”

    you’re right…it’s not a court of law…If this was the NFL would have to present it’s evidence, something it hasn’t done. All we know about the case is what the NFL has said happened; and you have to admit that the NFL has a motive with the concussion lawsuits to show it is taking aggressive action in the court of public opinion, if not law.

    Don’t you think if the NFL “had the goods” on these guys they would release it to make their case even stronger? They would say “Jonathan Vilma received $5,000 for knocking so-and-so out on Oct. 11, 2010.”

    To use your reference to a legal case, this lack of detail and specificity would never stand up in court.

    I’m still waiting for the NFL and Saints haters on here to tell me what taking away draft choices has anything to do with punishing those responsible for “Bounty Gate” anyway? Even if you think the punishments were appropriate, shouldn’t the punishment be directed at those who were responsible and participated? The fact that Goodell took away two years’ worth of high draft choices demonstrates his petty vindictiveness to the whole organization and its fan base.

  102. jammers11 says: May 2, 2012 5:07 PM

    We now know that something wasn’t right in that NFC championship game against the Vikings. Favre was roughed up bigtime in that game and it wasn’t simply a team trying to get the the SB. They tried their best to take him out of the game on a stretcher.

  103. musicman495 says: May 2, 2012 5:14 PM

    therpol says: May 2, 2012 1:18 PM

    Note to NFLPA: When the coaches admit there was a pay to injure program, and when your members (Thanks Anthony Hargrove for a signed statement. Love R. G.) admit there was a program, there was a program.
    ————————————-
    Just as they have not released any evidence – only characterized it – the NFL has not released Hargrove’s statement – only characterized it . “One player (Hargrove) submitted a written statement in which he did not dispute the existence of the program.” Sorry, not disputing something in a written statement is not the same as admitting to it.

    Sorry to burden the discussion with facts.

  104. cullenand99 says: May 2, 2012 5:18 PM

    To all the people saying “confessions don’t count as evidence”, do some research. It’s not that hard. Gregg Williams admitted to a PAY-FOR-PERFORMANCE, he never admitted to a bounty program, neither did Sean Payton.

  105. ilovefoolsball says: May 2, 2012 6:05 PM

    May 2, 2012 1:25 PM
    How about the NFLPA protecting the players these jerks injured? They don”t say a word about them. What a sorry organization. Bozos got less than they deserved.
    —–
    Novel idea, only problem is NO PLAYERS WERE INJURED

    Learn the facts then open mouth in that order.

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