Saints quarterback Drew Brees believes that coaches involved in the bounty scandal have remained silent because they fear further sanctions from the league. The league’s response to those claims is now in.
“You should ask [Saints head coach] Sean Payton,” NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said via email. “[Interim head coach] Joe Vitt has spoken quite openly.”
In a separate comment to The Dan Patrick Show, Aiello said there’s no truth to Brees’ claims.
As to Vitt, Aiello is right. Vitt has pulled no punches, suggesting even that the NFL has relied on evidence that may have been “falsified or tampered with.”
But Payton likely won’t say something if Payton believes that saying anything will create complications when the time comes to be reinstated.
And to the extent that Payton wasn’t directly involved in the pay-for-performance/bounty program, the person who really should be talking if former Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams. Among other things, the NFL claims Williams corroborated the contention that linebacker Jonathan Vilma offered $10,000 to anyone who knocks Brett Favre out of the 2009 NFC title game. Many have interpreted Williams’ silence as corroboration of the corroboration.
We’ll see whether or not Payton or Williams will have anything to say.