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Vilma suit outs Mike Cerullo as bounty whistleblower

New Orleans Saints 2009 Headshots

The latest Jonathan Vilma lawsuit blows the whistle on many things regarding the bounty investigation.  It also blows the whistle on the notorious whistleblower.

Though it’s been widely rumored that former Saints defensive assistant Mike Cerullo is the person who resurrected the bounty probe by reaching out to the league office in 2011, Vilma’s civil complaint makes it clear that Vilma believes Cerullo created the present mess.

Vilma also believes that Cerullo is acting out of spite.  At paragraph 105 of the complaint, Vilma alleges that the Saints fired Cerullo after he “disappear[ed] from the Club during the 2009 Season and provid[ed] a pretextual excuse that was shown to be inaccurate” and he “disappear[ed] from the Club during the week leading up to the Super Bowl in 2010, again giving a pretextual excuse that was shown to be inaccurate.”

After the Super Bowl win, Cerullo received “a cubic zirconia Super Bowl ring facsimile rather than a genuine Super Bowl ring, for which Cerullo has strenuously and vehemently expressed his resentment.”

At paragraph 106, Vilma alleges that Cerullo “pledged revenge against the Saints,” and particularly against assistant head coach/linebackers coach Joe Vitt.

At paragraphs 107 and 108, Vilma alleges that the NFL “relied principally upon Cerullo’s statements” during the bounty investigation, and that the disciplinary decisions were based on the results of “multiple interviews” of Cerullo.

At paragraph 109, Vilma claims that Cerullo “retracted his previous claims” during an April 2012 communication with Goodell.

At paragraph 124, Vilma alleges that Cerullo created the notes regarding the persons who pledged money to the Brett Favre bounty “well after the 2009 NFC Championship Game and in an effort to gain revenge against the Saints for terminating his employment.”

If Vilma’s allegations are true, the bounty case against him and the other players has been seriously undermined.

It’s not the first time a disgruntled former employee has caused problems for the Saints.  Former director of security Geoffrey Santini brought to light the Vicodin scandal that ensnared Vitt and coach Sean Payton.  Also, it’s believed that a disgruntled former Saints employee provided information to ESPN regarding the fairly recent (but already largely forgotten) claim that G.M. Mickey Loomis had the ability to eavesdrop on opposing coaches.

And so the broader message to the Saints organization is either that they need to treat their employees better, so that they don’t become disgruntled and share secrets with others, or that they need to do a better job of screening applicants who could eventually tell lies about the organization.  Or perhaps both.

For the league, the broader message is that there’s no longer any reason to protect Cerullo.  He has been outed in a federal lawsuit.  Release his notes and the summaries of all interviews to the players and their lawyers, and let’s see what Cerullo had to say.

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90 Responses to “Vilma suit outs Mike Cerullo as bounty whistleblower”
  1. treesloth16 says: Jul 2, 2012 8:20 AM

    He even looks like a spiteful D-bag.

  2. pape27 says: Jul 2, 2012 8:27 AM

    Cerullo is the leak?!?!?!

    That means Warren Sapp was wr-wr-wr-wr-mistaken about Shockey!

    Huh, who da thunk it?

  3. mdd913 says: Jul 2, 2012 8:27 AM

    None is this is particularly revelatory to anybody who has followed the case, but it does leave the NFL with no excuses about protecting the supposed “whistleblower,” who we’ve known all along is a dirtbag with ulterior motives.

  4. cash804 says: Jul 2, 2012 8:28 AM

    That’s why he fit so perfectly in that organization.

    Super Bowl XLIV Champions *…with an emphases on the “*”.

  5. nepaseahawk says: Jul 2, 2012 8:28 AM

    but sapp told me it was shockey………

  6. thejuddstir says: Jul 2, 2012 8:33 AM

    Just becuz someone outs someone else, does that automatically make them unbelievable. I would like to see PFT do a poll on the most despised person to ever play in the NFL and I’ll bet you Vilma would win hands down. Vilma’s best days are in his rear-view mirror and he has decided he is going out in a “blaze of shame” and doesn’t care who he takes with him.

  7. mdd913 says: Jul 2, 2012 8:33 AM

    That’s why he fit so perfectly in that organization.

    Super Bowl XLIV Champions *…with an emphases on the “*”.

    ————————————————————-

    You can put all the asterisks on it you want, but it still happened. I know it happened, and I have the Blu-ray.

    One of the happiest days of my life, and guess what? You can’t take it away, no matter how hard you try.

  8. musicman495 says: Jul 2, 2012 8:33 AM

    The NFL did not want to reveal this guy to prevent retribution and attacks on his reputation? Sheesh, he had no reputation to attack. Sounds like they wanted to protect the NFL’s reputation.

  9. marat28051988 says: Jul 2, 2012 8:35 AM

    USA USA. at us Russia with such informers understand very quickly. as they say “there is no person there is no problem”

  10. paulitik74 says: Jul 2, 2012 8:35 AM

    Undermined? Williams and Payton have admitted to it. Disgruntled or not, even if happened one time, it was one time too many. The NFL wouldn’t have been investigating it. Disgruntled or not, something happened, and the Saints were caught lying about it. Just shut the hell up and take the punishment like men.

    Effing babies.

  11. edhochuli says: Jul 2, 2012 8:44 AM

    So Vilma outs the guy based on assumption? If he wanted to, I’m sure Cerullo could sue Vilma for this if untrue. Why can’t these guys just accept their punishment like the coaches have? We haven’t heard a peep from them fighting this.

  12. captatl says: Jul 2, 2012 8:44 AM

    As has been Vilma and his attorneys cry for the past few month….”show us the evidence”. You come out and ridicule this man, yet you have given no clear evidence other than assumption. This sounds somewhat hypocritical. Seems this is the same “hearsay, and circumstantial” arguement that Vilma, the NFLPA, and Ginsberg were making against the League 3 weeks ago. You can’t have it both ways boys.

  13. realitypolice says: Jul 2, 2012 8:45 AM

    Given who the whistleblower turned out to be, I would say the NFL was less worried about protecting him and more worried about how bad their case would look if the public found out who he was.

    McNamee 2.0

  14. electionconfidential says: Jul 2, 2012 8:46 AM

    It doesn’t matter who blew the whistle… One need only listen to the Greg Williams audio to know that there was something really unholy going on with that team…

    That high / low hit on Favre was obviously intended to injure. After the play SOMEONE said “give me my money”. I agree that the league has been sloppy and arrogant, but there’s no denying that the Saints were dirty and deserve punishment if not the NFL death sentence.

  15. mojosmagic says: Jul 2, 2012 8:48 AM

    Shoot the messenger? Who cares except Saint fans who would sell their mothers into prostitution if it meant letting Vilma play again this season. The Saints got busted, man up and live with it because you have no other choice .

  16. GG Eden says: Jul 2, 2012 8:48 AM

    The point people are missing is that there was no bounty going on. It was all made up by the disgruntled whistleblower. Thus, Goodell went in blindly and stupidly believing it all. What’s just as bad is that the whistleblower who made it all up, ended up admitting to Goodell it was all made up, recanting his claims, but Goodell was too deeply entrenched in it by then to back out. He got suckered into it, so to speak, bought it hook line and sinker, and now refuses to admit he erred etc.

  17. tebowsafraud says: Jul 2, 2012 8:50 AM

    None of the information ALLEGED against Cerullo by Vilma is relevant. His allegations (if he in fact made any) meant nothing without corroboration. And they sure were corroborated!!

    What does Vilma have to say about Williams and Payton? What was THEIR motivation to come clean? They get fake rings too?

    Give it up Vilma (and the rest of the “it never happened” crowd). The evidence is very clear an unethical “pay to injure” program existed. The evidence is very clear that the Saint’s owner is clueless and had no idea how out of control his team had become.

  18. touchdownroddywhite says: Jul 2, 2012 8:52 AM

    Bout time the Vicodin case was mentioned. I don’t see how it ensnared them though. I seem to remember that going away very quickly and quietly after the first few articles…

  19. kidpresentable says: Jul 2, 2012 8:57 AM

    “We’ve got to do everything in the world to make sure we kill Frank Gore’s head. We want him running sideways. We want his head sideways. Little 32 (Kendall Hunter), we want to knock the (expletive) out of him…We hit (expletive) (Alex) Smith right there. (Williams points to his chin). Remember me, I’ve got the first one. I’ve got the first one. (Williams rubs his fingers together to indicate he’ll pay money for the hit). Go lay that (expletive) out!…The little wide receiver, No. 10 (Kyle Williams) … about his concussion. We need to (expletive) put a lock on him right now. He needs to decide. He needs to (expletive) decide. We need to decide whether Crabtree wants to be a fake (expletive) prima donna, or he wants to be a tough guy. We need to find it out. He becomes human when we (expletive) take out that outside ACL.”

    I suppose Cerullo made that part up too? Or that sources besides Cerullo have corroborated his story that Vilma put down $10K on Favre.

    Even if Cerullo has a grudge, and even if he’s a turd (remember Jose Canseco was a turd, and look how right he turned out to be), that doesn’t make his information less accurate. A lot of people leave jobs in a disgruntled state – that doesn’t mean the dirt they have is any less accurate. In a lot of cases, it was the dirt that made them disgruntled.

  20. reesesteel23 says: Jul 2, 2012 9:01 AM

    Sooo because someone snitched, they’re saying it cant be true?….they your defense??…give them an extra 4 games in 13-14 for wasting our time..

  21. mmlkr2c says: Jul 2, 2012 9:02 AM

    No does Shockey sue Sapp ? I know I would even if Sapp is in bankruptcy, any future monies he gets from contracts would partially go to Shockey.

  22. truthfactory says: Jul 2, 2012 9:05 AM

    While he may be the original whistleblower, I believe Goodell also interviewed several more coaches and players. When they were faced with the “tell me the TRUTH or else” ultimatum, Im sure one or more of those guys started singing to protect their own a$$. So Curello by himself may not be credible, but chances are Goodell has other players who cooberated the stories on the condition their names not be released.

    He has the power to do that, but if this goes to court, all bets are off and it can ALL come crashing down on the Saints if other players admitted the bounty.

  23. afrmediaonline says: Jul 2, 2012 9:12 AM

    None is this is particularly revelatory to anybody who has followed the case, but it does leave the NFL with no excuses about protecting the supposed “whistleblower,” who we’ve known all along is a dirtbag with ulterior motives.
    ——
    “We” know this? You believe it. Not the same as “knowing” anything.

  24. ezmoover says: Jul 2, 2012 9:14 AM

    Ha!

    First these guys whine about a smear campaign and then they do the exact same thing themselves by trying to smear the guy that (allegedly) leaked the scandal.

    Hypocrites.

  25. jg2040 says: Jul 2, 2012 9:15 AM

    Every NFL team fire employees every year who are pissed off about being fired. Why is it that the Saints have so many who are disgruntled? Maybe the Saints have a lot of bad things going on in their organization that a fired employee can use to get back at them.

  26. qdog112 says: Jul 2, 2012 9:19 AM

    pape27 says: Jul 2, 2012 8:27 AM

    Cerullo is the leak?!?!?!

    That means Warren Sapp was wr-wr-wr-wr-mistaken about Shockey!

    Huh, who da thunk it?
    **********************************
    Well, I’m glad that made your day. But who told is entirely irrelevant to the issue. I’m impressed at your ability to extract the important info from potentially BLOCKBUSTER NEWS.

    What will you say if we find out that Shocky (also a disgruntled former Saint) corroborated Cerullo? Will you be as anxious to share your obvious brilliance then?

  27. kidpresentable says: Jul 2, 2012 9:19 AM

    The real tragedy here is that the Saints have kind of made Favre into a somewhat sympathetic figure.

  28. sgtr0c says: Jul 2, 2012 9:24 AM

    What stops Cerullo from filing a defimation suit against Vilma now? Also, this info from Vilma’s current law suit, kinda is him saying/accepting that some bounty stuff actually happened, he is kinda a dope…

  29. gingerkid2000 says: Jul 2, 2012 9:26 AM

    So Goodell needs to provide evidence to punish the players. Shouldn’t Vilma have to supply evidence that Cerullo is lying?

    I can just see Goodell cackling and doing the evil-beard-stroky thing while reading this. Then start laughing harder at the fact that Vilma and Ginsburg have set themselves up to get sued by Cerullo for outing him with “false accusations” if they can’t prove he made this whole story up.

  30. eaglesw00t says: Jul 2, 2012 9:27 AM

    thejuddstir says:
    Jul 2, 2012 8:33 AM
    Just becuz someone outs someone else, does that automatically make them unbelievable. I would like to see PFT do a poll on the most despised person to ever play in the NFL and I’ll bet you Vilma would win hands down. Vilma’s best days are in his rear-view mirror and he has decided he is going out in a “blaze of shame” and doesn’t care who he takes with him.

    ——————————–

    Sorry, no matter who or when you poll, Vick will always be the most despised player. Look at any Vick related post, and see how many “dog killer” comments are there.

  31. sdisme says: Jul 2, 2012 9:34 AM

    truthfactory says: Jul 2, 2012 9:05 AM

    While he may be the original whistleblower, I believe Goodell also interviewed several more coaches and players. When they were faced with the “tell me the TRUTH or else” ultimatum, Im sure one or more of those guys started singing to protect their own a$$. So Curello by himself may not be credible, but chances are Goodell has other players who cooberated the stories on the condition their names not be released.

    __________________________________

    The current players were not interviewed during the investigation.

  32. nola5712 says: Jul 2, 2012 9:38 AM

    “paulitik74 says:
    Jul 2, 2012 8:35 AM
    Undermined? Williams and Payton have admitted to it. Disgruntled or not, even if happened one time, it was one time too many. The NFL wouldn’t have been investigating it. Disgruntled or not, something happened, and the Saints were caught lying about it. Just shut the hell up and take the punishment like men.

    Effing babies.”

    Seriously entertained by people who continue to show their lack of intelligence and knowledge by making the claim that Williams and/or Payton and/or players admitted to a “pay to injure” scheme. You people who make these claims obviously have not followed anything, as NEITHER of the aforementioned have admitted to that in ANY form or fashion. If you think otherwise, provide me with a link, and I’ll eat crow. Tools.

  33. rockthered1286 says: Jul 2, 2012 9:39 AM

    For once, Brees does not need an explanation. Why? Because Vilma really doesn’t have one. This is purely assumption. Unless Vilma can produce the same type of evidence against Cerullo that he claims the NFL needs to produce for a bounty system, then there’s no proof that Cerullo ever said a word, let alone anybody else. I think this is Vilma’s new approach: keep throwing darts and see if one hits. He figures if he calls out Cerullo, the NFL has to validate if it’s true. If it’s not and they get him to say as much, Vilma will find another scapegoat and accuse him, so on and so forth…

    I need to go back to college and get into law school. You can make bank off of the frivolous lawsuits this man is putting up….

  34. ruffbufffire says: Jul 2, 2012 9:40 AM

    Cant blame the guy for blowing the whistle!! Id be pissed if I received a cubic zirconia instead of the Diamonds!!

  35. bigball1 says: Jul 2, 2012 9:40 AM

    “TEAR DOWN THAT WALL MR. GOODELL”!

    Just with the amount of evidence that the NFL has shown they look very incompetent. I now can see why they might be reluctant to disclose much more!
    Even when they were originally talking about 22 to 27 players involved….I mean really, we have investigated for 3 years and we think we have a “bunch”. Not a real confidence builder….
    And people, these players did not have a chance to defend themselves…that’s the point. The appeal is really the first time they saw any of what they were accused of. Why do you think they are trying so hard to get to a venue that allows them to defend themselves?

  36. GG Eden says: Jul 2, 2012 9:42 AM

    Of course it was all made up, as astonishing as it sounds. Only have to consider Goodell released the first ledger as damning evidence, which after scrutiny showed nothing even added up injury-wise with what happened that day. So they re-released another ledger, which again after scrutiny showed nothing added up still.

    That’s how far Goodell is in the rabbit hole. The NFL are forced to resort to out-n-out lies and fabrications.

  37. ruffbufffire says: Jul 2, 2012 9:42 AM

    I still dont understand why the NFL ands it sorry officials arent held unaccountable for the numerous late hits and why the flags stayed in the referees pockets!! Throw a flag on late hit and they would have stopped!

  38. beedubyatoo says: Jul 2, 2012 9:43 AM

    And it only would have cost the Saints a few thousand bucks for another authenic SB ring to perhaps avoid this whole mess.

  39. goredskins11 says: Jul 2, 2012 9:54 AM

    People are still quoting the crazy Williams speech. I guess they can’t understand the difference between a pre-game rally speech that goes too far and being paid to injure players. That speech has nothing to do with the argument Vilma is making. But people still want to quote it like it’s the smoking gun. *shakes head*

  40. johnnyjagfan says: Jul 2, 2012 10:02 AM

    And so the broader message to the Saints organization is either that they need to treat their employees better, so that they don’t become disgruntled and share secrets with others…
    __________________________________

    SO the employee goes awol, twice, and the Saints should treat him “better”? Would you treat Rosenthal better if he did the same?

  41. rooneyruleblues says: Jul 2, 2012 10:08 AM

    If I am the Vikings, or 49ers and I play the Saints this season. I would do everything I can to make sure Drew Brees doesn’t see the field again will at least September 2013.

    Only way the Saints and their fans are going to understand how heinous their acts to pay to injure were.

  42. eaglesw00t says: Jul 2, 2012 10:18 AM

    Id be pissed about the ring too. People in the damn ticket office got rings.

    You hired him. You didnt fire him. He didnt leave until after the season, you owe him a ring.

    Giving him a cz ring is a scumbag move. You deserve every problem you got just for being a jerk on this issue alone.

  43. saints97 says: Jul 2, 2012 10:20 AM

    First off, Saints fans should be happy, based on purely football reasons, if Vilma is suspended for the year and the team does not have to pay him any money. The guy is done as an NFL linebacker, and he was terrible last year.

    Secondly, I find it interesting that the “one team” that had a “pay to injure” program” actually injured less players than most NFL teams in that time span. One would think they would have at least been in the top 5, and logic would tell you that they should have been leading by a mile.

  44. kidpresentable says: Jul 2, 2012 10:23 AM

    “Seriously entertained by people who continue to show their lack of intelligence and knowledge by making the claim that Williams and/or Payton and/or players admitted to a “pay to injure” scheme…as NEITHER of the aforementioned have admitted to that in ANY form or fashion. If you think otherwise, provide me with a link, and I’ll eat crow. Tools.”

    Well PFT deletes posts with links so google the words “sean payton apology” and you will be taken to several ESPN reports among others. For example, one on The Times-Pecayune website, includes the quote from Payton and Loomis:

    “We acknowledge that the violations disclosed by the NFL during their investigation of our club happened under our watch. We take full responsibility,” the Payton and Loomis statement began.”

    See, they acknowledge the violations disclosed by the NFL. The NFL claimed it was a bounty system. Payton and Loomis agree. As for Williams, google “gregg williams apology” and you will see that this very website had the following quote on March 21st:

    “I apologize to the players of the NFL for my involvement as it is not a true reflection of my values… nor is it reflective of the great respect I have for this game and its core principle of sportsmanship. I accept full responsibility for my actions…I will continue to cooperate fully with the league and its investigation and I will focus my energies on serving as an advocate for both player safety and sportsmanship.”

    You can argue semantics about Williams having called it a “pay for performance” system in the past. I would point out that twice in this apology (his second public one), he mentions the issue of sportsmanship and player safety. There’s nothing unsportsmanlike about a pay for performance system – that’s just a salary cap violation. A bounty system is unsportsmanlike. A bounty system is also an issue of player safety. You don’t need to read between the lines too much to get that Williams admits it.

    Now, nola5712, the honorable thing would be for you to eat your aforementioned crow. I suspect you’ll nitpick instead.

  45. northlawhodat says: Jul 2, 2012 10:26 AM

    The commish will fall. All the haters can hate all they want. Jonathon Vilma will win this one. And when he gets the suspension lifted and the opponent across the line of scrimage see’s #51 staring them down…………… Oh yeah baby! Can’t wait!

  46. paychrisjohnson28 says: Jul 2, 2012 10:29 AM

    Go to YouTube and search Greg Williams and listen to the audio speech to his Saints team and see how damning it is to him and the other players/ coaches …he is saying to do some bad things to other players…

  47. deeppurple23 says: Jul 2, 2012 10:31 AM

    I know plenty of “former” and “disgruntled” employees who have file various cases and charges against their former employer, most of the time the former employee was correct.

  48. mojosmagic says: Jul 2, 2012 10:40 AM

    The only people who think its made up are Saint fans and the guy running this app. Both are blinded self serving agendas.

  49. kidpresentable says: Jul 2, 2012 10:48 AM

    “The commish will fall. All the haters can hate all they want. Jonathon Vilma will win this one. And when he gets the suspension lifted and the opponent across the line of scrimage see’s #51 staring them down…………… Oh yeah baby! Can’t wait!”

    Is he going to get super-human strength from this like The Hulk? Will legal proceedings cause opponents to bounce off him like he grabbed one of those invincibility stars in Super Mario Bros? Will his 2012 season embarrass anything every put forth by Ray Lewis or Brian Urlacher because he’s hired a lawyer to file lawsuits on his behalf? Please do tell how this situation will transform Vilma from a solid 30-year-old player into some hybrid Superman-Jesus-Chuck Norris-Voltron-like unstoppable football machine.

  50. sdisme says: Jul 2, 2012 10:52 AM

    paychrisjohnson28 says: Jul 2, 2012 10:29 AM

    Go to YouTube and search Greg Williams and listen to the audio speech to his Saints team and see how damning it is to him and the other players/ coaches …he is saying to do some bad things to other players…

    ____________________________________

    You will also hear parts of the speech the media never played.

    Things like “we break their will not their skill.”

  51. geauxjay says: Jul 2, 2012 11:02 AM

    Go to YouTube and search Greg Williams and listen to the audio speech to his Saints team and see how damning it is to him and the other players/ coaches …he is saying to do some bad things to other players…

    ——————————

    Does it say “I will pay you a thousand dollars to injure Alex Smith?” If it doesn’t, then please STOP referring to this as “evidence.”

    Next question?

  52. jacks40 says: Jul 2, 2012 11:02 AM

    deeppurple23 says:
    Jul 2, 2012 10:31 AM
    I know plenty of “former” and “disgruntled” employees who have file various cases and charges against their former employer, most of the time the former employee was correct.

    ———————————————————————————–

    Made up stat alert.

    Lol, got anything to back that claim up?

  53. ftcsubs says: Jul 2, 2012 11:08 AM

    So if you had dirt on a previous employer it automatically is LIES. Where is that logic? Just because he was disgruntled, does not mean what he said was not true. Especially if he has information to back it up. Where does the disgruntled=LIES. Maybe you overlooked the TRUE information because you was employed by them, and had loyalties. But if you are not appreciated, your loyalties may sway and not want to go down with the ship, and be without a job. It’s kind of funny this is the mosaic the defense is painting I kind of like the Mosaic the NFL painted. Everybody in prison is innocent because they say so.

  54. hpeters77 says: Jul 2, 2012 11:19 AM

    A fake diamond Super Bowl ring – priceless. I bet the ring will end up at pawn stars

  55. eaglesw00t says: Jul 2, 2012 11:20 AM

    I really want to see Cerullo sue Vilma now.

    Bring the whole thing full circle.

  56. geauxjay says: Jul 2, 2012 11:20 AM

    Lol, got anything to back that claim up?
    —————————

    Well, for starters, the guy who said Mickey Loomis was wiretapping.

  57. thebarkexpress says: Jul 2, 2012 11:30 AM

    To Roger Goodell, please add an extra year to Vilma’s suspension. This guy is tiresome. Also looking forward to Mr Cerullo’s response to Vilma.

    Pass the popcorn.

  58. effjohntaylornorelation says: Jul 2, 2012 11:33 AM

    Unfortunately, this just confirms what type of people exist and thrive in the Saints organization. SMH

  59. sfsaintsfan says: Jul 2, 2012 11:35 AM

    rooneyruleblues says: Jul 2, 2012 10:08 AM

    “If I am the Vikings, or 49ers and I play the Saints this season. I would do everything I can to make sure Drew Brees doesn’t see the field again will at least September 2013.

    Only way the Saints and their fans are going to understand how heinous their acts to pay to injure were.”

    *******************

    Really, the Vikings O-line should have blocked somebody in that game, and the Saints had ZERO penalties in the game against the Niners. (They also failed to play defense.)

    So you want an illegal hit on Drew Brees, I guess you also want to lose your head coach for a year, a major assistant coach for 6 games, your GM for 8 games, a couple of defensive players, half a million in fines and lose two second round draft choices? Actually, I think it would be much, much worse if there was some evidence of intent to injure.

    There is no credible evidence of an intent to injure plan. NONE, ZERO, NADA!!

  60. kidpresentable says: Jul 2, 2012 11:50 AM

    “Does it say ‘I will pay you a thousand dollars to injure Alex Smith?’ If it doesn’t, then please STOP referring to this as “evidence.”’

    He said, “I’ve got the first one” while rubbing his fingers together. The rubbing his fingers together thing is acting out somebody holding up money. It’s quite a common gesture. Oh, you mean he literally had to say it, because people only talk literally. They never imply things, and only communicate through verbal communication so hand gestures must be meaningless.

    Remember two years ago when we heard audio of Brett Favre’s voicemail to Jenn Sterger, and some Viking fans were claiming that voice synthesizers were used to make this “fake” message sound like Favre in order to distract him in the week leading up to his game against the Jets? Sounds pretty ridiculous, doesn’t it? That’s how Saints fans sound now.

  61. franktherat96 says: Jul 2, 2012 12:01 PM

    cash804 says:
    Jul 2, 2012 8:28 AM
    That’s why he fit so perfectly in that organization.

    Super Bowl XLIV Champions *…with an emphases on the “*”.

    ______________________

    LOL @ people like you with the asterisk. You can put it there all you want, but it doesn’t change that it happen.

    Plus I find it fasinating, the more stuff that comes out disproving the NFL in this situation the more people like you want to stand by it. Jealous a little. You are probably a falcon fan and realize there will never be a day that you will win a super bowl….not with melted ice at QB.

    Either way, you keep putting the asterisk on that…what ever makes you feel better.

    Sincerely,

    Fan of the Super Bowl XLIV Champions

    P.S. – notice no asterisk….it works both ways.

  62. franktherat96 says: Jul 2, 2012 12:03 PM

    rooneyruleblues says: Jul 2, 2012 10:08 AM

    “If I am the Vikings, or 49ers and I play the Saints this season. I would do everything I can to make sure Drew Brees doesn’t see the field again will at least September 2013.

    Only way the Saints and their fans are going to understand how heinous their acts to pay to injure were.”

    __________________

    Gotta love this…. from a fan that can’t believe what the Saints probably did(which they didn’t and more and more info is proving it was pay for performance and not a bounty system), yet you are approving of taking out a player…..Nice class there. You keep that up.

  63. cssaint78 says: Jul 2, 2012 12:07 PM

    “Undermined? Williams and Payton have admitted to it.”

    Are you serious!?! This far into the controversy and you STILL don’t know that they did NOT admit to bounties, but only pay-for-performance? Please, just go away until you’ve actually read the actual DETAILS of the case and not just the seen the picture the NFL has painted for you.

  64. cssaint78 says: Jul 2, 2012 12:08 PM

    The Saints put up exactly ZERO penalties against the Niners. What exactly would the Niners be seeking revenge for again?

  65. duece5 says: Jul 2, 2012 12:29 PM

    GG Eden says:Jul 2, 2012 8:48 AM

    The point people are missing is that there was no bounty going on. It was all made up by the disgruntled whistleblower. Thus, Goodell went in blindly and stupidly believing it all. What’s just as bad is that the whistleblower who made it all up, ended up admitting to Goodell it was all made up, recanting his claims, but Goodell was too deeply entrenched in it by then to back out. He got suckered into it, so to speak, bought it hook line and sinker, and now refuses to admit he erred etc.

    Duece5 says:

    Yep, GG….right! (sarc.)

    That’s why your head coach-Paayton and your ex-DC-Williams-ADMITTED TO IT!!!!!

    Are you clueless?

    Gee, they are going to accept a LIE??

    Your own coached ADMIITED it!!

    Get a clue dude!!!!!

  66. mvp43 says: Jul 2, 2012 12:30 PM

    A fake diamond and a fake Superbowl win……that’s fitting!

  67. jkaldur says: Jul 2, 2012 12:43 PM

    At paragraph 187 Vilma states, “I am grasping at straws”

  68. aintthenazz says: Jul 2, 2012 12:49 PM

    “And so the broader message to the Saints organization is either that they need to treat their employees better, so that they don’t become disgruntled and share secrets with others, or that they need to do a better job of screening applicants who could eventually tell lies about the organization.”

    ===============================
    Or they could try not cheating.

  69. JSpicoli says: Jul 2, 2012 12:49 PM

    Cubic Zirconia causes yet another messy divorce.

  70. nispikers says: Jul 2, 2012 12:57 PM

    Neither Williams nor Payton admitted to a bounty program. And Cerullo was outed by another journalist at the beginning of all of this. So if there are any suits they aren’t going to be against Vilma.
    The tape of the San Fran game came after the suspensions took place. One of the people that Goodell says verified that Vilma placed a 10,000.00 bounty on Farve is saying that he told Goodell that he never saw Vilma put up money or ever talk about putting up money. Vitt has said that Vilma never put up money for a bounty. Nothing concrete here except what naysayers want to believe. Show us a withdrawal from a bank account or a deposit into one for payment. You can’t.

  71. 88ibis says: Jul 2, 2012 12:58 PM

    First step in any lawsuit: Discredit the opposition witness. Use words like disgruntled, expose any dirt you can find on them. It worked for R. Clemens and B. Bonds, it’ll work for you.

    Do you think most whistle blowers have walls covered with employee of the month awards? Do you think all of the employees being exposed by the whistleblowers have warm fuzzy things to say about them?

    This is just part of the legal game, and it gets worse from here.

  72. eagles113 says: Jul 2, 2012 1:04 PM

    Just for the fact, how many times have whistle blowers been people who were happy with their organization? Of course he is disgruntled . disgruntled people stop keeping the dirt a secret in every organization in the country. It’s the way it is !

  73. datathoughts says: Jul 2, 2012 1:31 PM

    I don’t have a dog in this hunt but it is beyond clear that the NFL blew everything about this so called investigation. Goodell needs to fall on his sword, apologize to the players and the Saints organization and move on. Good grief, how much more can you screw something up.

  74. unionslie says: Jul 2, 2012 1:35 PM

    And yet no serious injury’s to players playing the saints durring the bounty period. This is more about the NFL’s rep and the fact that players were getting paid/reworded outside of their contracts. It’s not about players hurting players for money, that’s the goal every sunday, monday, and sometimes thursday and saturday for most Defensive players.

  75. FinFan68 says: Jul 2, 2012 1:58 PM

    There is an awful lot of speculation by Vilma. Even if you assume it is all true, you have to ask yourself how could Vilma possibly know it.

    How can he claim the NFL ““relied principally upon Cerullo’s statements” yet claim he has been shown no evidence (and the NFL never revealed the whistleblower)?

    He has no way of knowing that Cerullo “retracted his previous claims” during an April 2012 communication with Goodell, or that Cerullo created the notes regarding the persons who pledged money to the Brett Favre bounty “well after the 2009 NFC Championship Game and in an effort to gain revenge against the Saints for terminating his employment” unless Goodell or Cerullo told him. How likely is that?

    The ring can be easily verified and so could the revenge proclamation if it was said allowed to a group of people (kinda like Vilma’s $10k offer allegedly was) so he ought to have a corroborating witness like the NFL does against him. Even if those two claims are true it only shows a motivation. It does not show that he made everything up and it does not explain the video tape and the rest of the evidence that corroborates Cerullo’s story.

    Vilma is grasping at straws and trying to divert attention away from his misdeeds. There are likely plenty of faithful followers and/or non-critical thinkers that will hold onto these claims as “proof” nothing ever happened…even though the mere claims by Vilma actually show that it did.

  76. kidpresentable says: Jul 2, 2012 2:00 PM

    “And yet no serious injury’s to players playing the saints durring the bounty period.”

    So by your standards, attempted homicide shouldn’t be considered a crime?

  77. gtodriver says: Jul 2, 2012 2:03 PM

    nola5712 says:

    “Seriously entertained by people who continue to show their lack of intelligence and knowledge by making the claim that Williams and/or Payton and/or players admitted to a “pay to injure” scheme. You people who make these claims obviously have not followed anything, as NEITHER of the aforementioned have admitted to that in ANY form or fashion. If you think otherwise, provide me with a link, and I’ll eat crow. Tools.”

    FWIW, Vilma admits to the bounty program in the first point in the most recent legal maneuvering:

    “Vilma offered to provide the NFL with complete ‘detail[] [of] Vilma’s knowledge regarding [the Bounty Program] allegations.”

    If there wasn’t a bounty program – what would Vilma be offering complete detail of?

    Vilma’s pissed because he couldn’t cut a deal and be one of the snitches instead of being suspended for his heinous activities.

  78. korikill says: Jul 2, 2012 2:18 PM

    So because the Saints D was pathetic, and failed utterly in their attempts to injure other players, that is evidence that there was NO bounty system in place?? LOL!

  79. tackledummy1505 says: Jul 2, 2012 3:04 PM

    Lol this is blowing up in their face. Is it the worst of 2 worlds though? The bounty case is a little weaker than the brain case so I guess the NFL did a good job on that. This is the simple problem with a lot of leagues world wide. The Commissioner, President, etc., whoevers in charge has too much power and influence over their sport. Could be what ends sports too

  80. goatlava says: Jul 2, 2012 3:35 PM

    Warren “Horse Chops” Sapp and his comments about shockey show exactly why he should have no future with ESPN. His uneducated speculation leads to more problems within the ranks of the players association. Its a perfect example of the disconnect between players which leads to their inability to maintain a cohessive bond when it comes to the NFLPA. Thats why they got the shaft with the new CBA. Sapp stands for Stupid A** Past Player. I really loved his rankings on the final best 3 QBs of the top 100, leaving Rodgers at the bottom. Then swiftly kissing his a** when he was nominated by his Present peers as the best. Dudes a joke!

  81. silentcount says: Jul 2, 2012 3:41 PM

    If Cerullo, the main witness, recanted his orignal claims and Goodell kept that hidden from Vilma, then the gavel pretty much slams down instantly in the court case. Goodell, guilty as charged. A 3 year bounty system paying to intentionally injure players? Yeah right, in your dreams, mister red face. Just shut up and take your punishment.

  82. goatlava says: Jul 2, 2012 4:49 PM

    Goodell or Godell. This guy is the poster boy for the NFLs new moniker- No Fun League!

  83. houndog50 says: Jul 3, 2012 1:54 AM

    kidpresentable says: Jul 2, 2012 9:19 AM

    The real tragedy here is that the Saints have kind of made Favre into a somewhat sympathetic figure.
    ==============================
    Kudos to you kidpresentable!
    Hell, if I’d have known there was a bounty fund on Favre, I’d have sent them a check myself!

  84. houndog50 says: Jul 3, 2012 2:05 AM

    goatlava says: Jul 2, 2012 3:35 PM

    Warren “Horse Chops” Sapp and his comments about shockey show exactly why he should have no future with ESPN.
    ===========================
    No future with ESPN?
    Was he planning on leaving NFL Network to go to ESPN?
    Is NFL Network planning on dumping him?
    Sapp is not the only “Joke” in your comment, dude!

  85. besdayz says: Jul 3, 2012 2:09 AM

    Lets put the asterisk where it belongs

    Roger Goodell’s bountygate*

  86. burlyisatruefan says: Jul 3, 2012 11:41 AM

    If anyone thinks Goodell doesn’t know what he’s doing then your heads have been up your behinds so long that your starving for oxygen.

    Roger hasn’t flinched once. This poker game will go on and on and all the chips will end up on Roger’s side of the table.

    Vilma and Co. are walking dead.

    Speculate all you want, listen to all the recordings. William’s and Payton’s apologies may not have spelled out the “pay for injury” evidence that a criminal court would demand but any one with an once of grey matter can tell you it is enough evidence for a manager of a company to take corrective action with employees. That’s what this is. A work related issue.

  87. ceadderman says: Jul 3, 2012 11:50 AM

    Wait Mr. Vilma, I thought there was no Bounty program?At least that’s what you said last week. Now this week the whistle blower is Cerullo?

    If you and the Saints organization were above board from the very beginning, do you think this “spiteful man” would have had anything to give the Commissioner or the League?

    You look after you and there ain’t nuthin the other guy can say to anyone. I hope everyone that is a plaintiff in this suit gets hammered harder when the arbiter/judge sides with the Commissioner.

  88. tmar1961 says: Jul 3, 2012 3:06 PM

    People are still quoting the crazy Williams speech. I guess they can’t understand the difference between a pre-game rally speech that goes too far and being paid to injure players. That speech has nothing to do with the argument Vilma is making. But people still want to quote it like it’s the smoking gun. *shakes head*
    ——————————————————————————————————

    That’s the first legit comment about this bountygate scandal I have heard in a long time. And lets not forget that NONE of the Saints coaches have admitted to a bounty program, to a pay-for-performance yes, but bounty no. PFP has and will be around forever no matter what the league does. Could you imagine a QB NOT being able to thank his O-line by picking up the dinner check since thats PFP?

  89. badintent says: Jul 4, 2012 12:22 AM

    Karma, Ain’t fans. you getting “Manhandled by Monster Lynch” just proved what a bunch of no D-up, man-up clowns your team Really was 2 years ago. Couldn’t beat a 7-9 team in a playoff game ! Pathetic. Now more chumping, snooping and pooping. Give up it girls. Vilma can play in CFL. His salary will be what he made in pay to play chump change. Karma……………………..

  90. finleye says: Jul 6, 2012 1:55 PM

    Saints fans, no ones trying to take your championship away. We are, however, not in any way surprised or shocked by the outcome of these events; as a Panthers fan, many of the perceptions we have of your organization have been unequivocally confirmed by not only the turn of these events, but the organizations reaction & reponse to them. Mickey Loomis denial of eavesdropping was much more transparent and believable than the players much more orchestrated denial, which appears to be carefully constructed but not very believable.

    The true colors of the Saints organization have been revealed to the world; if its a smear campaign (which I don’t think it is, but it could be) then its one that might be well-deserved.

    But in the end, what was Roger supposed to do? He already gets enough crap about the fines as it is, and if he wants to continue this safety crusade, he HAD to come down hard on the Saints, simply for the enhanced potential of injury that these bounties create, regardless if no cart-off or knockout bounties were ever paid. A $10,000 pledge provides an additional incentive that is UNACCEPTABLE. You can moan all you want about the how the investigation was handled, I’m sure it wasn’t executed flawlessly, but I believe the league is being more truthful than the Saints are, and that’s really all I need to know.

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