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Joe Vitt files affidavit in support of Jonathan Vilma, rips investigation

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Saints interim coach Joe Vitt submitted his own affadavit backing linebacker Jonathan Vilma’s request for a temporary restraining order, following Vilma and Saints trainer Scottie Patton’s.

Vitt also used the forum to deny the existence of the bounty system, the one  which he was suspended six games for his role in by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.

“While I anxiously await being able to provide substantive and truthful testimony and information about the allegations made by Mr. Goodell regarding the so-called but non-existent Bounty Program, and to refute that the Saints ever had a bounty on an opposing player and set out to injure anyone or to encourage any other Saints player to injure anyone, I will restrict my Affidavit here to issues that I have been informed are relevant to Mr. Vilma’s Motion to Restrain Temporarily the Suspension,” the affidavit said, according to the New Orleans Times-Picayune.

He also echoed previous statements that Vilma needed to participate in training camp.

“The Suspension, and our inability to work with Mr. Vilma, in my opinion jeopardizes the entire Saints football team and our 2012 -2013 Season,” Vitt said in the affidavit.

That’s good strong language for a legal brief, but it does perhaps ignore the football reality, that Vilma was in decline last year. There’s a reasonable argument to be made they’ve upgraded at the position with Curtis Lofton. But that’s a different affidavit for a different day.

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20 Responses to “Joe Vitt files affidavit in support of Jonathan Vilma, rips investigation”
  1. daysend564 says: Jul 17, 2012 4:24 PM

    He’s temporary head coach. He now has skin in this game. Of course he’s going to fight to get Vilma reinstated.

    If he is successful inder “dire” circumstances, he’ll get a HC position in the near future. If he tanks, he will never get another chance.

  2. cwmorga says: Jul 17, 2012 4:27 PM

    This is the second affidavit from a Saints player or coach claiming there was no bounty system. For those claiming that Vilma has nothing to lose by taking this to court, remember that lying in an affidavit is perjury.

    It’s interesting that they’re willing to stake their freedom. I wonder if Roger would do the same.

  3. sdisme says: Jul 17, 2012 4:28 PM

    He also stated Coach Payton’s reinstatement is conditioned on Mr. Goodell’s personal approval.

    I think we can put “the coaches admited it” argument to rest.

  4. youngry says: Jul 17, 2012 4:31 PM

    Will everyone on the Saints just shut up already.

  5. bucrightoff says: Jul 17, 2012 4:34 PM

    Vilma is on the downside of his career. The Saints will probably cut him after this season, so I can see why he wants to fight this tooth and nail. Of course being a grad from the U, the most tainted program in America, makes any claim he makes substantially less believable.

  6. sadskinsfan89 says: Jul 17, 2012 4:34 PM

    The thing that still confuses me, and if anyone knows please say so, but didnt greg williams admit to having the program? He said how sry he was and that it shouldnt have happend. Then you have vitt saying it never existed. Why would williams admit to something not real?

  7. buccaneer4ever says: Jul 17, 2012 5:20 PM

    As a Bucs fan, I’m quite enjoying the chaos that surrounds the Saints at present. Watching them rage and implode is a lot of fun.

  8. swampdog4life says: Jul 17, 2012 5:21 PM

    @Sadskinsfan89,

    Williams didn’t write his letter that you are referring to. The NFL provided a document for him to sign and basically forced his hand. He’s denied it as well. The fact is… there was no “Bounty System” in place …Ever! However, there was a Pay for Performance system that used terms that can be associated with a bounty system and paid out cash for legal clean hits and encouraged hard hits that 1.) knocked a player out of the game (mentally and/or physically), 2.)discouraged penalties and mental mistakes that only game review could determine, 3.) reinforced other team rules and policed the players off field conduct.

    Similar systems “are still” in place thought the leage…. trust me… i know!

    The difference here is that GW character easily exposes him to this attack and the Commish was looking for a way to stand on this pedestal. One could easily point to a Vikings or Cardinal game to say there was a bounty placed on those QB’s, but not really. Everything mentioned was within the scope of that system that was already in place. It was not like the bounties placed on players back in the day… where people were seriously trying to injure someone… nah. But the focus was certainly on Farve and Warner in the scope of the game.

    Truth be told, if the P4P system wasn’t in place, the play on the field wouldn’t have been any more different. The thing that upsets most Saints Fans is that they had resort to this type of incentive plan with the salaries they already have for playing a game we all love so much. But, people have to concept of what it takes to motivate a person with a great deal of wealth already…. Respect from your peers! Not just $200. But, $200 from the coach… in front of the team; being taken to dinner by a teammate, given a special seat or chair during a meeting, being able to eat first, having everyone recognize your achievement! These are the things that matter and this is the reason players play the game… after they get the big payday!

  9. thejuddstir says: Jul 17, 2012 5:47 PM

    Is everyone else as tired of Vitt, Vilma and Vicoden as I am. It’s time for the other 31 owners to have a “come to jesus talk” with Tom Benson and have him either clean up the act or clean out the house. I bet the NFL, Goodell and the other 31 owners are thinking Al Davis was a true “Saint” compared to these Saints*

  10. cwmorga says: Jul 17, 2012 5:50 PM

    @buccaneer4ever says: Jul 17, 2012 5:20 PM

    As a Bucs fan, I’m quite enjoying the chaos that surrounds the Saints at present. Watching them rage and implode is a lot of fun.
    ——————–

    I see why, as a Bucs fan, you take great enjoyment in the offseason. The regular season kind of sucks, huh?

  11. lks311 says: Jul 17, 2012 5:51 PM

    People can play the semantics game all they want, but they want to call it “Pay for Performance” when you knock someone out of a game instead of Bounty, then that’s fine. The concept of knock someone out of a game is them intent to injure. Calling out the Kyle Williams had a concussion and let’s get him out of the game, is the intent to injure. Pay for Performance my $@@.

    Essentially, you’re putting lipstick on a pigskin.

  12. itsbreesyintheeasy says: Jul 17, 2012 6:14 PM

    The concept of knock someone out of a game is them intent to injure. Calling out the Kyle Williams had a concussion and let’s get him out of the game, is the intent to injure.

    =================================

    seemed to work for the giants but no one batted an eye. they even admitted it!

  13. xakle says: Jul 17, 2012 6:26 PM

    lks311 says:
    Jul 17, 2012 5:51 PM
    People can play the semantics game all they want, but they want to call it “Pay for Performance” when you knock someone out of a game instead of Bounty, then that’s fine. The concept of knock someone out of a game is them intent to injure. Calling out the Kyle Williams had a concussion and let’s get him out of the game, is the intent to injure. Pay for Performance my $@@.

    Essentially, you’re putting lipstick on a pigskin.
    _____________________________

    You mean like the Giants’ players admitting to targeting Kyle Williams’ head after the NFC Championship game? Only to have Greg Aiello state that “Players are responsible for their actions on the field”.

    FACT: Saints caused the 2nd fewest (San Diego) amount of injuries from 2009-2011.

    If they were out to injure opponents, then what does that say about 30 of the other 31 teams.

  14. flannlv says: Jul 17, 2012 6:27 PM

    Ilks

    The Kyle Williams quotes were from NYG players, not Saint players.

  15. bigjdve says: Jul 17, 2012 6:57 PM

    Oops maybe they should target the Giants for suspensions as well, oh wait they didn’t lie about when questioned. They also didn’t try to cover it up.

    Bounties, P4P – is semantics depending on who is asking the questions. However the Saints tried to hide or cover up whichever they had. Innocent people, or people that honestly believe that they are innocent don’t try to cover things up.

    Joe Vitt may not have offered money for “Bounties”, but I believe that he did for P4P. It should be interesting if he gets called into court on whether a judge or jury appreciates the semantics. Either way he got suspended for trying to hide a program that was against the rules.

    Bounties or P4P, both are illegal, so does it really matter which term is used?

  16. 32bigg says: Jul 17, 2012 6:57 PM

    cwmorga says: Jul 17, 2012 4:27 PM

    This is the second affidavit from a Saints player or coach claiming there was no bounty system. For those claiming that Vilma has nothing to lose by taking this to court, remember that lying in an affidavit is perjury.

    —————————————————–

    Remember, it’s not a lie, if you believe it.

  17. silentcount says: Jul 17, 2012 9:31 PM

    If you’re tired of hearing about the Saints, then stop reading about them. But don’t get mad at them for not laying down and accepting Goodell’s accusations. There was no bounty system paying to intentionally injure players. Why did Goodell create this whole mess? You’ll have to ask him, but he didn’t seem like he expected to be challenged, so it’s probably good that he is.

  18. nerdyturdy says: Jul 18, 2012 12:30 AM

    I agree with bigjdve, Giants didn’t lie and we’re told to knock it off once, and there wasn’t a long history in which they were repeatedly told to knock it off.

    This is about deception and willful disobedience and oil in Iraq! If there wasn’t oil in Iraq, we would not be punishing the Saints for lying.

    Wait, what?

  19. bigd7660 says: Jul 18, 2012 8:03 AM

    “If they were out to injure opponents, then what does that say about 30 of the other 31 teams.”

    I don’t know, that 30 of the other 31 teams hit harder than the Saints?

  20. gumerk says: Jul 18, 2012 5:43 PM

    “The thing that still confuses me, and if anyone knows please say so, but didnt greg williams admit to having the program? He said how sry he was and that it shouldnt have happend. Then you have vitt saying it never existed. Why would williams admit to something not real?”
    ————————————————————-
    @sadskinsfan89

    Here is the quote from the Greg Williams letter_

    ““I want to express my sincere regret and apology to the NFL, Mr. Benson, and the New Orleans Saints fans for my participation in the ‘pay for performance’ program while I was with the Saints.”

    It was also reported by media outlets that the NFL wrote Greg Williams speech for him and he signed it. I can’t call that a fact but it’s a possibility.

    Pay For Performance and Bounty Pay to Injure are galaxies apart when it comes to impact on the league, players, and what punishments should fit the crime.

    Remember, Vilma was accused of funding and being a captain of a Pay To Injure Bounty program from the very start, on a very high public platform as well.

    If you were accused of strong armed robbery but you only was guilty of reckless driving, would you not fight it tooth and nail?

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