The Saints bounty scandal has taken yet another curious turn.
Attached to the grievances filed Thursday by the NFLPA are the four letters sent by Commissioner Roger Goodell to the players who have been suspended, subject to appeal.
One of the letters is addressed to Packers defensive end Anthony Hargrove, who according to the NFL has confessed to various actions in a signed declaration. Previously, we’d assumed that Hargrove signed the declaration at the behest of the NFL — and we wondered when/if Hargrove would disavow the document by claiming that he signed whatever the league put in front of him, a la Frankie Pentangeli.
As it turns out, the declaration wasn’t harvested by the NFL. It was submitted by the NFLPA.
This makes the contents of the declaration far more persuasive, since there can now be no argument that Hargrove was in any way coerced into signing it by the league. It also could create a conflict for the NFLPA regarding the competing interests of Hargrove and the other three players, if Hargrove admits to things that Jonathan Vilma and Will Smith publicly have denied.
The race is surely on to get the declaration. Gentlemen (and ladies), start your Blackberries.