As Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma continues to fight his yearlong suspension for his alleged involvement in the Saints’ bounty program, he has found an unlikely ally in the player he supposedly offered teammates $10,000 to knock out of the NFC Championship Game.
Brett Favre says that even if former Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams confirmed that Vilma put a bounty on Favre, that’s not enough evidence to take away a full season of a player’s career. And so Favre says he was glad when the courts ordered Vilma and the other three suspended players to be reinstated while seeking a fuller explanation of their suspensions from NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.
“In all honesty I’m pretty indifferent,” Favre said of the bounty case in an interview with Mike Tirico of ESPN. “But I’d have to say when they were allowed to play, I thought that was the right move, because I don’t see enough evidence. I don’t think ‘Some guy said that this went on’ is enough evidence. I don’t know Jonathan all that well. I think he’s a great player. Seems like a great leader. Seems like the guys who have played with him have a lot of respect for him, and Scott Fujita. The other guys I really don’t know. I felt like that’s the right thing to do. Otherwise, I think it’s just hearsay.”
Favre, who was himself once fined $50,000 for refusing to cooperate with an NFL investigation into accusations that he sexually harassed a Jets employee, may not be the most credible source of opinions about league investigations. But if the supposed victim of Vilma’s actions isn’t convinced that Vilma deserves to be suspended, it’s not surprising that a lot of other people aren’t convinced, either.