Report: Saints kept ledger detailing $1,000 payments for cart-offs

Reuters

As suspended Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma continues to spar with the NFL about the disclosure of evidence in the league’s bounty investigation, a new report details one piece of evidence that the league views as significant: A ledger showing payments to Saints players for meeting the goals of the bounty program.

Jason Cole of Yahoo Sports reports that the league has a “ledger” showing earnings for players in the bounty program, with $1,000 payments for cart-offs, $400 for hard hits and $100 deductions for mental errors.

The ledger includes notations from 2009 games against the Bills (three $1,000 payments) and against the Giants (one $1,000 payment). It’s not clear who the players involved were, either the Saints players involved in the payments or the Bills and Giants players who were hurt.

One disturbing detail in the report is that in the case of one $1,000 bonus on the ledger, someone wrote down that the player carted off was placed on injured reserve, marking it with an exclamation point.

There are plenty of unanswered questions in all this, such as who was keeping the ledger, who made the payments (or whether the payments were actually made) and who turned the ledger over to the league office. And NFL Players Association spokesman George Atallah said the NFLPA has not seen the ledger and questions the league’s reliance on it.

“I guess it either qualifies as evidence, which means fair due process was violated because [the] players didn’t get to see it before they were punished or it is not hard evidence because they didn’t get to see it and cross examine the validity of that piece of evidence,” Atallah wrote in a message to Cole.

But whether the union accepts the evidence or not, it’s one more damaging report for the union’s members who have been implicated in the Saints’ bounty scandal.

58 responses to “Report: Saints kept ledger detailing $1,000 payments for cart-offs

  1. One disturbing detail in the report is that in the case of one $1,000 bonus on the ledger, someone wrote down that the player carted off was placed on injured reserve, marking it with an exclamation point.
    ———————————————————————

    They should be SO proud of themselves. “Hey mom, look what I did!”

  2. who says these athletes get nothing from their years in college? Obviously someone on the roster paid attention in Introduction to Accounting.

  3. 4 Buffalo starters left the Bills-Saints game in 2009. 3 of them were defenders, and one was an offensive tackle (groin problem). No mention in any of the recaps of any offensive skill player being carted off.

  4. Rumor is that all the NFL’s evidence was provided by an ex-Saint’s employee with an ax to grind.

    Rumor also says that 15 seconds of the Greg Williams audio recording was cut – in the cut audio he supposedly tells the team to “don’t hurt the team, don’t go over the line”.

    All this from a radio interview with New Orleans’ author Alan Donnes. It’s up on youtube.

    Somebody should check into all this. If all the evidence was provided by an ex-employee with an ax to grind, then the evidence is suspect.

    If this evidence is real, then why has it taken the NFL MONTHS to come out with it? Simply stating that there was a ledger up front would have been the simplest thing to do.

    It’s seems awfully strange that a new Pamphilon blog and this blog come out on the same day.

    Last, in the 2009 season, the media has reported that there were no cart-offs in 2009. So, what players was put on injured reserve that game??? And, it would be days or weeks later before the person keeping the ledger knew that someone was put on injured reserve…weren’t the bounties paid out immediately after games? Providing these details would go a long way toward making the accusations of a bounty program and ledger seem more reliable.

  5. “I guess it either qualifies as evidence, which means fair due process was violated because [the] players didn’t get to see it before they were punished or it is not hard evidence because they didn’t get to see it and cross examine the validity of that piece of evidence,” Atallah wrote in a message to Cole.

    ————————————

    These guys do realize that this is not the judicial system? There’s no mention of “due process” in the CBA. Roger Goodell is fully complying with the CBA. Atallah is not entitled to the names of the whistleblowers, he’s not entitled to get his hands on the raw evidence. Because of this he can not smear, denigrate, or blackball any union member who may have come forward.

    Contrary to what the union loadly decries as the fight of innocent men to clear their names, this is about assigning blame for airing their dirty laundry. It’s not the Saints fault for their violations, it’s the fault of the people who exposed their violations!

    Sorry guys, you don’t get to send private investigators rummaging through the whistleblowers life. You do not get to smear him in the media. You do not get to make his life miserable just because he made yours miserable.

  6. Am I the only one that would think these players would look at these bounty rewards as chump change? Why even risk being part of this bounty program? Money couldn’t have been that much of a motivating factor. Maybe props from fellow teammates rather.

  7. Vilma, I would consider dropping that lawsuit right now. You have no case anymore.

  8. If that Greg Williams tape is used as evidance I’ll lose all hope in a fair NFL. Williams was just saying what almost every coordinator/defensive team captain says to pump the team up.

    You wouldn’t arrest a guy who has a knife in his pocket for attempted murder simply because he has the POTENTIAL to stab someone, so why hammer a guy who’s team merely had the POTENTIAL to hurt someone but didn’t?

  9. So that’s one more evidence of a pay-for-performance program that nobody is denying.

    Thanks NFL but that’s not what we were asking.

  10. @genericuser8888 says: Jun 1, 2012 6:09 PM

    Rumor is that all the NFL’s evidence was provided by an ex-Saint’s employee with an ax to grind.

    Rumor also says that 15 seconds of the Greg Williams audio recording was cut – in the cut audio he supposedly tells the team to “don’t hurt the team, don’t go over the line”.

    All this from a radio interview with New Orleans’ author Alan Donnes. It’s up on youtube.

    Somebody should check into all this. If all the evidence was provided by an ex-employee with an ax to grind, then the evidence is suspect.

    If this evidence is real, then why has it taken the NFL MONTHS to come out with it? Simply stating that there was a ledger up front would have been the simplest thing to do.

    It’s seems awfully strange that a new Pamphilon blog and this blog come out on the same day.

    Last, in the 2009 season, the media has reported that there were no cart-offs in 2009. So, what players was put on injured reserve that game??? And, it would be days or weeks later before the person keeping the ledger knew that someone was put on injured reserve…weren’t the bounties paid out immediately after games? Providing these details would go a long way toward making the accusations of a bounty program and ledger seem more reliable.
    ————————————————-
    Trust me, this will never stop. The NFL will never release enough evidence for Saints fans. What a joke. Karma has something coming for Saints fans and it will be well deserved…

  11. andymannfl says:
    Jun 1, 2012 6:00 PM
    Be careful what you ask for Saints because the full onion that is the Bounty Program is getting peeled.

     —-

    Ok so let me get this straight. League says there’s a BP, league suspends players. Players want evidence, league has evidence. So tell me exactly what could get worse for the team if they release said evidence? NOTHING they’ve already been handed the punishment so releasing the evidence that you already have doesn’t do a thing. So don’t try to sell that “be careful what you wish for” garbage it will have no effect.

  12. I love the NO conspiracy theorist who commented- thanks for the laughs. The NFL likes to be private with meetings and materials that’s why the haven’t made the information public… But anyway enjoy the suspensions Aint’s players and former players!

  13. That will do, if real. It will also get the Saints sued by every player injured against them in the last five years. Expect them to be paying out for years on this.

    I can’t believe they wrote that crap down. I am starting to think that the coaching staff got off too light in their suspensions.

  14. As far as I know, the only player to go on IR after that game was Leodis McKelvin who was placed on IR 4 days after the game against the Saints…

  15. McKelvin came into the game with an ankle injury so he was not returning kicks or punts that week. So the Saints offense would have had to have had a bounty on him…?

  16. And yet if true, how does this evidence suggests that they were trying to hurt players intentionally..all this proves is there was a “pay for system”, which everyone from the Saints have come to grips of acknowledging that one did exist..yet, if true again, just cause someone got carted off the field doesn’t suggest that they intentionally did it, it’s football, players are getting paid to inflict pain on one another..and NEWS FLASH, while in this process of inflicting pain on one another, players do get hurt

    P.S. I’m not a Saints fan, just being objective bout this bs

  17. We have seen this before, with the Hargrove confession. The league claims it has something, then when we see it we find out the League at best exaggerated. Let’s see the ledger

  18. The four Buffalo Bills players injured were defensive backs Leodis McKelvin, Donte Whitner and Bryan Scott, and offensive tackle Demetrius Bell.

    McKelvin aggravated a pre-existing injury to his ankle. Whitner hurt his thumb on a tackle. Scott twisted an ankle. Bell tweaked a groin.

    None of the above players were carted off.

  19. The Giants player injured was offensive tackle Kareem McKenzie, also with a groin strain. He actually was carted off.

  20. On NFL Network, Jason Cole said in regards to “the player carted off was placed on injured reserve, marking it with an exclamation point” that it didn’t come from the Bills or Giants games. Though he did not know what game it was from.

  21. These guys should take the suspensions and quit while theyre ahead. If a ledger comes out showing they lied, its going to look even worse. Im sure they werent the only team doing this. But they got caught. Thats the chance you take when you do wrong

  22. Starting cornerback Leodis McKelvin, starting safeties Donte Whitner, Bryan Scott, Starting left tackle Demetrius Bell were the Bills players that were hurt during the Buffalo vs New Orleans game in 2009. They were talking about Whitner or McKelvin as the higher profile player, I’m guessing Whitner, since McKelvin came into the game pre-injured and just tweaked his ankle again. I believe Bell hurt his chest and Scott injured his arm.
    Gregg Williams is one sick dude. Just think, he coached some of these guys too! Loser.

  23. To play devil’s advocate here…how did the league get this alleged ledger and more importantly, who would keep it around DURING an investigation and have the chance of it being found?

    Also, the flip-side question is, how did it wind up in the hands of the investigators? Did some disgruntled individual in the organization steal it and kept it to get back at the team?

  24. Seriously Saints fans, it has become impossible to intelligently give this team the benefit of the doubt….. You’re team blew it, not only did the blow it but they got caught…. Continuing to make yourself the victims only makes you sound delusional….

  25. Is that the evidence that Saints fans and Vilma wanted? If they could comprehend what that means, maybe but they will still be in denial. At least Florio and other naysayers will not have what they wanted. This is this just the tip opf the iceberg. I’m already laughing at Aints fans and it won’t stop for a while.

    Why did anyone think the NFL didn’t have a mountain of evidence. Vilma’s lawsuit is frivolous.

  26. Looks like most Saint fans have finally come to grips with reality, and have decided to accept the truth and move on. Only a few nuts left still calling for a conspiracy.

  27. You always felt that the NFL must have something pretty tangible to bring out the hammer the way they did against the Saints…..I always felt that perhaps they were not releasing specifics in deference to the players. However, if the players and the union insist that the details be released, they may eventually regret it…after being routinely lied to by our own government, most people don’t have a lot of patience with overpaid athletes, their union reps or their agents…..

  28. So far, the only IR player I’ve found on a Saints opponent was LB Thomas Davis tearing his ACL and going on IR on 11/9/2009, but the bounty program was supposed to be about the defense, not the O.

  29. The accused players and their supporters all demand to know what the definition of “is” is. They would also like you to ignore the man behind the curtain and instead focus on the one standing on the grassy knoll.

  30. Okay, that is what the coaches and organization was punished for. It does not prove anything that Vilma was specifically involved. But to you idiots I’m sure somehow it does.

  31. So let’s see this supposed ledger. Or did Roger Goodell already burn it like he did the Spygate evidence?

    Funny how nobody here has seen any kind of evidence (you know…because none has been released) and yet they have already tried and convicted the Saints.

    And no, i’m not a Saints fan. Be careful how you people run your mouths, who knows who’ll be stepping forward next about one of your teams. And I doubt a single one of you are man enough to own up to your mouths when it happens.

  32. I still think the punishment is too light. I know the NFL is a business, but if they were really serious about dishing out punishment, they should consider postseason bans.

  33. So let me get this straight. The allegations are that the defensive players were being payed to injure opposing offensive players. The ledger appears to back this up, stating that players were injured in the games against the Bills and Giants and that payments were made. Yet, the players injured were defensive players or o-linemen that left with groin pulls? So how do defensive players get rewarded for an opposing defensive player getting hurt, when they’re not even on the field at the same time? And how does an opposing player pulling a muscle constitute a rewardable play by the defender? Something’s fishy.

  34. So is there still denial? Did Brees ask to see the ledger? Oh wait, he won’t sign his tender. LOL

  35. saints25 says:
    Jun 1, 2012 7:27 PM
    another “timely” release by the NFL
    —————————————-
    Is there a point to this statement? You’ve been asking for evidence. Here it is along with the admissions of the front office that took full responsibility. Now you want to criticize the timing? Really?

  36. Hmmm, sounds bad and is another piece of said evidence. Too bad it could have been written at any time and by anybody. Such hard evidence…. more than likely from someone that was fired. I call bs on this just like the diary of pamperbutt coming out at such a oppertune time. Dirty or not, I’m a Saints fan and will stay that way. I feel like they were doing illegal stuff. So did your team and your very naive if you think they didn’t. Your team just wasn’t investigated. Yet. Some even admit to it. Do they get called on it? No because Goddell doesn’t want a lot of the owners mad at him at one time. Next year it will be someone else’s turn in the barrel. So go ahead and hate on Dem Saints. Calling them Aints and all. Thats your one insult. Too bad the Saints fans gave it to them and you cant claim it. Even after all this, the Saints will win the NFC South once again. Then the Superbowl in our own backyard. But surely if they did, that will be the next reason why we won it. How unfair it was. I hear it now. To the poster above that said it seems like the Saints fans have gotten quiet…. get real man, we never will. Thats because ” true “Saints fans got their teams back. Bounty or not, The Saints Are Comin! Just you wait and see.

  37. Argh!!! I keep reading articles with nfl union quotes and my brain starts hurting! Always right when I get to some of those quotes…

    Ok, I’ll make this simple. To the NFL Union known as the NFLPA, your players’ respective contracts with their respective teams, no matter what they say, removes the employers right to fire or reprimand an employee without presenting the actual evidence at the time of firing or reprimanding the employee. Specifically at the time of firing or reprimanding the employee. Beyond that is beyond that, and there are ways of possibly obtaining or being given the actual evidence.

    On a personal opinion note, the other day Vilma said he didn’t go talk to the league when they offered when they notified him of his suspension, because he asked them to hand over the evidence to himself and his lawyer(s?) first and they didnt. He never followed through with a reasonable approach, giving the league an immediate ultimatum in place where a ‘complete lack of both exercise and faith in the process set forth by both law and standard regarding everyday business practices and standards’ and possible insubordination but not doing what a reasonable employee of any american company would do if both notified while not at work of a reprimand which included an immediate suspension from work and being told of an option to come into work and discuss the allegations and punishment, which would be to go to their work on the specified date at the specified time to discuss the allegations and punishment, is what my opinion is the court will say.

  38. You wouldn’t arrest a guy who has a knife in his pocket for attempted murder simply because he has the POTENTIAL to stab someone, so why hammer a guy who’s team merely had the POTENTIAL to hurt someone but didn’t?

    ————————————————

    That’s a bad comparison. He was essentially paying his players extra money to hurt the opposing players.

    So a better comparison would be… Would you be arrested if you hired someone to murder another person? And the answer to that question, is yes!

  39. Look, if yer a Saints fan and still throwing out that this is a “conspiracy” , you’ve got issues and no doubt wouldve went to Jonestown and drank the poison kool-aid. You didn’t do it. Those scum bags did do it. Root for your team. I would do the same but don’t be that nieve about it.

  40. 1. Who will be the first reporter to have the guts to ask the NFL and its Commissar if there was evidence that they collected that CONTRADICTS the conclusion that the Saints ran a bounty program?

    2. Who will be the first reporter to have the guts to put injuries to Saints players during 2006 – 2009 under a microscope to see if there were any bounty programs run by other teams against them?

    Or is there just such a herd mentality in the sports press – especially those who work for organizations in bed with the NFL for their broadcasting livelihood – that no one will ask such questions?

    Thank God Mike Florio decided to start asking these type questions, and not swallowing the Park Avenue Kool Aid.

  41. Man, you Saints fans. God bless ya.

    Better to just accept it and move on at this point.

  42. jkaflagg says: Jun 1, 2012 7:41 PM

    …after being routinely lied to by our own government, most people don’t have a lot of patience with overpaid athletes, their union reps or their agents…..
    —————————————
    .. or NFL executives.

  43. sportmentary says: Jun 1, 2012 7:31 PM

    Is that the evidence that Saints fans and Vilma wanted? If they could comprehend what that means, maybe but they will still be in denial. At least Florio and other naysayers will not have what they wanted. This is this just the tip opf the iceberg. I’m already laughing at Aints fans and it won’t stop for a while.

    Why did anyone think the NFL didn’t have a mountain of evidence. Vilma’s lawsuit is frivolous.
    —————————–
    This is neither an iceberg, nor a mountain. This is a pffft.

  44. musicman495 says:
    Jun 1, 2012 10:03 PM
    sportmentary says: Jun 1, 2012 7:31 PM

    Is that the evidence that Saints fans and Vilma wanted?

    __________________________

    Just to be clear this isn’t evidence. It’s a report from Yahoo from unnamed league sources.

    If there is a ledger it should be shown to the NFLPA. You can’t say you are protecting a “snitch” showing documents.

  45. Seems to me that Scott Fujita is talking out both sides of his mouth. I’ve thought for a long time that he is the “rat,” and the more I hear conflicting reports about him the more I believe it.

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