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In 1996, NFL was OK with Reggie White paying teammates for hits

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In the 1996 playoffs, Hall of Fame Packers defensive end Reggie White made a deal with his teammates: Make a big hit, and I’ll give you $500.

In its latest filing in the bounty case, a copy of which PFT has obtained, the NFLPA says that the NFL knew White was paying teammates for hits and allowed it to continue, and therefore is showing inconsistency now by suspending four players for a similar pay-for-performance program with the Saints.

The filing from the NFLPA in the bounty case discusses White’s “Smash for Cash” program, which included $500 payments for big hits. At the time, according to the NFLPA, the NFL said the program was OK “as long as players use their own money, amounts are not exorbitant and payments aren’t for illegal hits.”

The NFLPA says that the NFL’s rules haven’t changed since then, but the NFL’s PR agenda has.

“The fact that the NFL has a different agenda today than in 1996 can’t change the unequivocal language of the NFL Constitution and Bylaws, which has never prohibited this behavior,” the NFLPA says in its filing.

Although White’s “Smash for Cash” program hasn’t often been brought up in connection with the Saints bounty case, White’s actions were no secret at the time. ESPN did a segment on White’s bonuses, the New York Daily News ran a headline declaring that White had offered to pay bounties, and in an Associated Press article from January of 1996, White is quoted as saying he handed out his entire $13,000 playoff bonus for a win over the 49ers to teammates.

“I gave them money for big hits,” White said. “I don’t know if the money is any more motivation, but I know I paid out a lot.”

The Associated Press article says that White had already told his teammates it would be the same deal for the next playoff game, against the Cowboys, and that an NFL spokesman said there was nothing wrong with what White did, likening it to a quarterback buying gifts for his offensive linemen.

The NFL’s stance on that has changed quite a bit in 16 years.

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110 Responses to “In 1996, NFL was OK with Reggie White paying teammates for hits”
  1. judsonjr says: Oct 18, 2012 7:25 PM

    All I remember about that game is Wayne Simmons just beating up Brent Jones down after down.

    RIP Wayne.

  2. champs794 says: Oct 18, 2012 7:26 PM

    It’s not really a news story that the NFL makes an exception for the Green Bay Packers.

    And besides, it’s only $500 worth of team “stock”.

  3. steelbydesign says: Oct 18, 2012 7:26 PM

    This really seems pretty irrelevant to me.

    The NFL also used to sell big hits highlight videos. Things have changed with what we know now about head injuries.

  4. searchingwithmygoodeyeclosed says: Oct 18, 2012 7:27 PM

    I’m guessing the pending concussion lawsuits against the NFL have caused the change of opinion by the league. It’s all about the $$$.

  5. notthathand says: Oct 18, 2012 7:29 PM

    “The NFL’s stance on that has changed quite a bit in 16 years.”

    Yup. And the Saints were warned not to do it, continued to do it, lied to NFL investigators, and are now being punished.

    Apples and oranges.

  6. miamatt says: Oct 18, 2012 7:29 PM

    Bounties have been widespread on the pro and college level for decades. The NFL’s handling of them recently reflects a new agenda, and there is no doubting the league has been duplicitous in this regard.

  7. phillyphever says: Oct 18, 2012 7:29 PM

    Different commish from that time. Doubt Tags wanted to deal with anything bounty related.

  8. jpmelon says: Oct 18, 2012 7:30 PM

    Nonsense. The difference is the language….there is a difference between a big hit and a cart off. A big hit might lead to a cart-off, but the Saints program rewarded temporary or permanent injuries (a player only gets carted off when he is injured). Not to mention the recent findings that link concussions to Lou Gehrig’s disease.

  9. louisianafootballfan says: Oct 18, 2012 7:30 PM

    What’s the only difference between then and now…the NFL being sued by former players for concussions. So it was fine then, but now it doesn’t suit the league’s agenda. That seems fair, right?

  10. j0esixpack says: Oct 18, 2012 7:30 PM

    I’m loving the fact that the NFLPA is showing Goodell for what he really is… someone who hands down penalties and interprets rules based on the winds of public opinion.

    With most fans clueless, even to this day, that signal taping is allowed by the NFL, Goodell capitulated to an ignorant fan base that thanks to Goodell, still believes the Patriots’ 2001, 2003 & 2004 Super Bowls are invalid because they violated a 2006 rule during the 2007 season.

    Now he’s trying to do the same thing to the Saints.

    Ultimately there is only one real “rule” in the NFL. If you make Roger Goodell look bad, expect to endure suspensions, fines, and lost draft picks regardless of the rules.

    Ironically now it’s Goodell who is making Goodell look bad.

  11. flankerright says: Oct 18, 2012 7:31 PM

    The NFL just needs to stop with the bounty garbage. Let’s face it, if you are 25 and older and ever played contact football I am pretty sure you got rewarded in some way for delivering a big hit. Rather it be the cheer from the crowd or the collection of hitman stickers for your helmet, you got recognized for knocking the snot bubbles out of someone. What’s wrong with rich people passing around a few bucks for doing the same thing?

  12. myasylum11 says: Oct 18, 2012 7:32 PM

    The difference is Reggie White was a God… The rest of these chaps are merely mortals.

  13. ketelwon says: Oct 18, 2012 7:32 PM

    More proof Goodell thinks the league is his own personal fantasy league to dictate whatever he wants.

    He’s gotta go…he’s ruining the game

  14. goodellgate says: Oct 18, 2012 7:37 PM

    ***jpmelon says:
    Oct 18, 2012 7:30 PM
    Nonsense. The difference is the language….there is a difference between a big hit and a cart off.
    ***

    Except that in the Saints pay-per-perf program, a cart-off was just a big hit.

  15. steelernationfartsinyourfaceandwinschampionships says: Oct 18, 2012 7:37 PM

    6 rings

  16. contract says: Oct 18, 2012 7:38 PM

    Lots of things used to be allowed that aren’t allowed now. For example … playing defense.

  17. donato77 says: Oct 18, 2012 7:39 PM

    There’s no difference at all. Saints paid money for legal hits only. Hypocrisy at its finest.

  18. commonsensedude says: Oct 18, 2012 7:41 PM

    There’s no need to argue about consistency, fairness, justice or any of that nonsense. It IS Roger Goodell’s NFL and it’s his prerogative to make up the rules as he goes along. Next story.

    If the NFL under Goodell can fine two teams millions of dollars for breaking “unwritten” rules under the direction of the owner of the teams’ divisional opponent, what’s the point of trying to apply logic to the situation. Just try to keep Goodell in a good mood and you should be just fine.

  19. paredskinwarrior1985 says: Oct 18, 2012 7:41 PM

    why is this the first time this has been reported???? if this was reported when the saints bounty stuff came out I think fans and even judges would have put a stop to the nfls agenda in all this!!! I really don’t see a problem with a bounty program and I am def a fan of monster hits!!! people need to stop being such wusses and realize that injuries are apart of life and help make the sport the greatest sport in the world!! id love it if death row prisoners were forced to fight each other to the death and be on ppv with the profits going to victims!!! Men should be Men and stop putting on panties regardless of children

  20. packerbacker86 says: Oct 18, 2012 7:44 PM

    The U.S. Constitution has not changed, yet with new Justices and new social norms, the interpretation of the U.S. Constitution has changed. Rodger Goodell is not required to have the same interpretation as past NFL Commissioners. Poor legal reasoning by the NFLPA.

  21. silentcount says: Oct 18, 2012 7:45 PM

    What?!!! This is shocking!! I expect the NFL to immediately suspend the Packers head coach and defensive coordinator for a year. Suspend the general manager and top assistant coach for 6 games. Also, take away draft picks and fine the owner 500 grand. If not, then don’t give unfair punishments to the Saints, either.

  22. montsta says: Oct 18, 2012 7:46 PM

    In 1996, a gallon of gas cost $1.19 and MC Hammer was Too Legit 2 Quit. Things change.

  23. deeppurple23 says: Oct 18, 2012 7:47 PM

    There is a difference between a player giving money and the organization developing a systematic process.

  24. ripseau says: Oct 18, 2012 7:49 PM

    In 2000 a hs teammate of mine didn’t know his name midgame. I told the coach and suggested he come out. Coach told me that while he was out he could buy himself a dress too. Funny at the time but he ended up having a concussion and broken neck.
    Times have changed

  25. daaabears says: Oct 18, 2012 7:49 PM

    flankerright says:
    Oct 18, 2012 7:31 PM
    The NFL just needs to stop with the bounty garbage. Let’s face it, if you are 25 and older and ever played contact football I am pretty sure you got rewarded in some way for delivering a big hit. Rather it be the cheer from the crowd or the collection of hitman stickers for your helmet, you got recognized for knocking the snot bubbles out of someone. What’s wrong with rich people passing around a few bucks for doing the same thing?
    ————————————-
    Uhh, because they were trying to hurt people?

  26. hor2012 says: Oct 18, 2012 7:50 PM

    Alright, now if this is true, and I admit that it is a very big if, then what happen to us is simply wrong. Up until now I may not have agreed with the anti- Saints feelings on this issue but I did understand. Now, if this is true the Saints have been victimized by the greatest act of hypocrisy that has even occurred. I openly invite anyone who doesn’t agree with me, and I’m a lifelong Saints fan, to explain how it’s justified that we’ve lost out coach for the entire year and draft picks. And, when you respond could you please hold the insults as I didn’t address any to any fans out there

  27. hummer53 says: Oct 18, 2012 7:56 PM

    Goodie two shoes was just sweeping the floors at the NFL offices then.

  28. lippy4246 says: Oct 18, 2012 7:56 PM

    It all goes back to that piece of garbage Buddy Ryan. Dirty coaches like Gregg Williams and Jeff Fischer all were spawn from his tree while a player like Reggie White learned his scruples from Buddy. Ryan was as dirty as they come

  29. jpmelon says: Oct 18, 2012 7:57 PM

    @ Goodellgate

    you said, “Except that in the Saints pay-per-perf program, a cart-off was just a big hit.”

    Do you actually beleive that the saints replaced the phrase “big hit” with “cart-off”? Anyone with an ounce of common sense knows what a cart-off is. By your logic, a “knock-out” is when the football gets tipped.

  30. binkystevens says: Oct 18, 2012 7:58 PM

    Did the defensive coordinator also encourage his team to blow out the opposing QB’s ACL? No? Got it. Then it wasn’t a pay to injure scheme like the Saints had. Not the same thing, and also nearly 20 years ago when the NFL sold highlights of big hits which would now be considered illegal

  31. Andre's Johnson says: Oct 18, 2012 8:01 PM

    This isn’t even apples and oranges. It’s apples and lampshades.

  32. nothimagain says: Oct 18, 2012 8:04 PM

    In 1996 Paul Tagliabue was also okay with turning a cheek to felony arrests.

  33. snccoach says: Oct 18, 2012 8:04 PM

    The NFL was also okay 10 years earlier in 1986 when Packer Charles Harris had a hit list on his towel.

  34. daaabears says: Oct 18, 2012 8:08 PM

    @hor2012

    Because they were paying for injuries from the get-go.

    The coaches admitted it, and are taking their punishment like men. I might not like what M. Vick did, but he is square with the house. Same with these guys.

    The excuses and lack of accountability truly makes me sick. Admit wrongdoing, accept the punishment, become better for it and move on.

    PS. I like the Saints.

  35. sactogary says: Oct 18, 2012 8:14 PM

    hor2012 says:Oct 18, 2012 7:50 PM

    Alright, now if this is true, and I admit that it is a very big if, then what happen to us is simply wrong. … I openly invite anyone who doesn’t agree with me, and I’m a lifelong Saints fan, to explain how it’s justified that we’ve lost out coach for the entire year and draft picks….
    ——————————————————–
    Two things: 1) 1996 was a long time ago – we live in a different world (and football league) now; 2) cart-off means injury – there’s a big difference between paying for hits and paying for injuries.

  36. lorddarkhelmet says: Oct 18, 2012 8:18 PM

    HUGE difference, that was a payout system totally handled by Reggie White. The Saints system was put in place and administered by a coach…say nothing the fact that there was in fact a bounty to take out the QB which White would never have done.

  37. opinion157983 says: Oct 18, 2012 8:20 PM

    Moot point. Different commish. If you are warned to stay out of the cookie jar and Still take one you’re gonna get punished. Maybe you think it’s ok and maybe you are even right but that warning should have kept you out. I’m so sick of this crap and wish it would go away. That city deserves a lot better than this including what brees has become.

  38. yetimonster says: Oct 18, 2012 8:21 PM

    “Touch and hit the head…”

    Big hits are awesome if you aren’t trying to take off the guy’s head or wreck his knees.

    Three years of warnings to the Saints, three years of lies from the Saints. Nobody here but us chickens, Commish!

  39. sdisme says: Oct 18, 2012 8:21 PM

    notthathand says:
    Oct 18, 2012 7:29 PM
    “The NFL’s stance on that has changed quite a bit in 16 years.”

    Yup. And the Saints were warned not to do it, continued to do it, lied to NFL investigators, and are now being punished.

    Apples and oranges.
    ___________________________

    You obviously have no clue what is going on here, so I will try to explain:

    The NFL has said Fujita is being punished for violating the NFL bylaws & constitution.

    The constitution & bylaws are not different today then they were in 1996.

    Second the NFL never warned Vilma, Fujita, Smith about anything. In fact they didn’t even know of the investigation in early 2010.

  40. phuriousjorge says: Oct 18, 2012 8:23 PM

    snccoach says: Oct 18, 2012 8:04 PM

    The NFL was also okay 10 years earlier in 1986 when Packer Charles Harris had a hit list on his towel.
    =============
    Yes, remember when he bodyslammed McMahon down 4 seconds after the play and knocked him out of some games?
    15 yard penalty, no fine. Wasn’t even kicked out of the game.

  41. laeaglefan says: Oct 18, 2012 8:29 PM

    I don’t think you can really compare the NFL in 1996 to the NFL today, where they hand out fines and suspensions like water. Back then you had to do something really flagrant to get fined.

  42. cwwgk says: Oct 18, 2012 8:30 PM

    Goodell and the league’s lawyers have to be laughing hysterically at this latest tantrum filed by the NFLPA. Not sure how they can even take it seriously. Somebody did something sixteen years ago so therefore the judicial system should vacate the suspensions? This type of argument is what lawyer jokes of made of.

    Pathetic.

    The Saints are being punished for rewarding players if, and ONLY if, an opposing player they hit was injured as a result of the hit.

    Someone needs to save the players from the NFLPA.

  43. briang123 says: Oct 18, 2012 8:31 PM

    Probably the same people that are outraged by Tebow’s open religious views while ignoring that Reggie White put him to shame.

  44. rgledz says: Oct 18, 2012 8:36 PM

    Preferential treatment for the Packers!!?? Unheard of!

  45. captainloaded says: Oct 18, 2012 8:37 PM

    Goodell wasn’t involved then either….new argument.

  46. thejuddstir says: Oct 18, 2012 8:39 PM

    Any other team and it might be “newsworthy” but this is just another example in a long list of “exceptions” that are granted to the Packers and only the Packers.

  47. brewcrewfan54 says: Oct 18, 2012 8:40 PM

    Once again the biggest problem is the NFL players union was stupid enough to allow Goodell, a guy who obviously likes seeing his name in the paper, be the ultimate decision maker in their CBA. As much as I hate Goodell they did it to themselves.

  48. bigblueblitz says: Oct 18, 2012 8:48 PM

    You do realize that the Saints bounty program is for putting bounty on injuring players, where as this has nothing to with injuries – right?

    You kinda just wrote a really long article about nothing.

  49. thetokyosandblaster says: Oct 18, 2012 8:53 PM

    hahahahahahaha

    Oh my lord.

    The key here is “intent to injure”

    The saints tried knocking people out of games, and Reggie White consistently dropped to a knee and prayed if someone was on the ground, from the packers or the opposition. He never wanted anyone hurt.

  50. countyk66ers says: Oct 18, 2012 8:56 PM

    Charles Martin.

  51. cmizzad says: Oct 18, 2012 8:57 PM

    phuriousjorge says: Oct 18, 2012 8:23 PM

    snccoach says: Oct 18, 2012 8:04 PM

    The NFL was also okay 10 years earlier in 1986 when Packer Charles Harris had a hit list on his towel.
    =============
    Yes, remember when he bodyslammed McMahon down 4 seconds after the play and knocked him out of some games?
    15 yard penalty, no fine. Wasn’t even kicked out of the game.
    =============================

    Yes, he was absolutely kicked out of the game. Pull up the youtube video.

  52. notthathand says: Oct 18, 2012 9:00 PM

    “You obviously have no clue what is going on here, so I will try to explain:

    The NFL has said Fujita is being punished for violating the NFL bylaws & constitution.

    The constitution & bylaws are not different today then they were in 1996.

    Second the NFL never warned Vilma, Fujita, Smith about anything. In fact they didn’t even know of the investigation in early 2010.”

    Really? Then that makes Joe Vitt, Gregg Williams and Sean Payton three of the biggest backstabbers since the Black Sox.

    Thanks for the education.

  53. fmwarner says: Oct 18, 2012 9:21 PM

    As many people have pointed out, “things change” and “that was 1996″. Point taken. But if things change, you may want to change the rules to reflect it instead of making it up as you go along, which is what Rog is doing. No matter how you slice it, if the rules haven’t changed, then the difference between what happened to Reggie White (nothing) and the Saints (everything) is a disgrace.

  54. larryjames836 says: Oct 18, 2012 9:26 PM

    To be honest NFL football is a bounty program all by itself they pay these guys millions of dollars for what carry-off, cart-off, roll-off if needed. So the whole NFL is a bounty program players can be in practice and get carry-off, cart-off, or roll-off because it’s a contact sport. Everybody looking at the New Orleans Saints like PAY- FOR- Performance is something the Saints started on their own, so it can cause the focus on the Saints. The NFL commissioner Roger Goodell just trying to point the fingers at the teams, so the NFL can turn all these concussions lawsuits on the teams. Roger Goodell just get some better insurance for these players so when they get these illnesses they can still file on the NFL. The NFL is not the only aggressive sport playing, and the only games with concussions no other sports has lawsuits on them but the NFL because they don’t want to spend money on the right insurance coverage. Pass, Present, and Future players should have some kind of coverage that cover players after they is out are finished with football they should still be covered. Like the military as long as its service-connected they have that kind of benefits, the NFL need the same benefits and stop putting it on the teams when this is what you players the players to do hit hard.

  55. insidej0b says: Oct 18, 2012 9:36 PM

    Ra ra ra.! Goodell says they tried to hurt people! I haven’t read any of the filings but they’re GUILTY! They should just take their punishment like a bunch of bitches! Ra ra ra! I’m a mouth breather!!!! Ra ra ra!

    Get a clue. Can’t wait till Goodell pulls some crap with your team.

  56. daaabears says: Oct 18, 2012 9:38 PM

    @cmizzad

    Thanks. Long time ago.

  57. booker1974 says: Oct 18, 2012 9:45 PM

    For all those saying the Saints were warned and ignored the warnings, consider where you heard that and the other lies that have come from that same person in regard to this issue.

    First of all, the players were never warned by anyone, with the team or the league, that they needed to stop the pay for performance system. The first they heard anything about a “bounty system” was on March 2nd like everyone else.

    Now the coaches and front office were at least asked/warned about something, but exactly what they were asked is debatable. They may have been asked a couple of times about putting bounties on other players but I find it highly doubtful that they were told to stop any “pay for performance system” and then continued to do so. Whatever was said to them, though, was never disseminated to the players, and from everything I’ve heard and read the coaches were generally shocked that the league equated what was going on with a bounty system.

  58. rrobbyrob says: Oct 18, 2012 9:46 PM

    Roger Goodell: Sean, Mickey we know you guys have a bounty system going on… stop it.

    SP, ML: No we don’t

    RG: 1 game suspensions for both of you.

    SP, ML: Sorry Mr. Goodell. We now understand the importance of this and will stand by your side on all issues of player safety from now on.

    See Roger, 3 beers in and I can run the NFL more effeciently than you.

  59. whatjusthapped says: Oct 18, 2012 9:48 PM

    1996 was also the year the Packers won their 3rd Superbowl. I think that fact is what makes the Viking trolls come out in force to suggest the Packers have gotten away with something.

    They did, the Lombardi trophy.

  60. musicman495 says: Oct 18, 2012 9:56 PM

    yetimonster says: Oct 18, 2012 8:21 PM

    “Touch and hit the head…”

    Big hits are awesome if you aren’t trying to take off the guy’s head or wreck his knees.

    Three years of warnings to the Saints, three years of lies from the Saints. Nobody here but us chickens, Commish!
    —————————————-
    Do we really still have to tell people that no one actually touched or hit the head, so unless you want to suspend someone for what they said, you have no case.

    In addition, you do realize that if the players said they weren’t doing it, and they weren’t doing it, that ain’t lying, right?

  61. haansel82 says: Oct 18, 2012 9:57 PM

    From what I can read: Reggie White payed for big hits – The Saints bounty paid for injuries, not just big hits.

    A big hit can lead to a cart off, but the Saints were explicit, it had to be a cart off or injury.

    I can see a huge difference in leveling someone; and taking a dive at their knee or going helmet to helmet to ring someones bell.

  62. dcmaxx says: Oct 18, 2012 10:01 PM

    LOL at all of the naive fairies in here saying “but, but the Saints were trying to injure people”. Where are all of the injuries? And to the people saying that the Saints were warned to stop: Oh, really, are you sure? How do you know that? Because Goodell said so?

  63. gridassassin says: Oct 18, 2012 10:06 PM

    Any time I see the words Reggie White I think of that speech he gave. btw, which Asian guy can I give an old piece of crap Timex watch to and he can turn it into a MacBook?

  64. gmen2thebowl says: Oct 18, 2012 10:06 PM

    I personally believe that we’re losing the key issue in why Greg Williams and whoever else participated are wrong. Its that they allegedly were being paid to knock players out of the game and they received a little more cash if they were carted off! My personal issue with the Saints scandal if true is that they went out to hurt people,Williams mentioned taking out Crabtrees ACL! I dont care if co workers create a pot of money that goes to whoever has the biggest hits or most int’s or sacks, people can do what they like with their money and if helps the team play at a higher level than thats great but dont pay players to be hitmen and purposely hurt other players.

    On the surface there was nothing wrong with “Smash for Cash” other than it sounds like an advertisement for prositution lol.

  65. ilovefoolsball says: Oct 18, 2012 10:07 PM

    It’s funny to read so many of your comments about the Saints talking about cart-offs and such as that being the difference between the Saints and White, the Giants players targeting Kyle Williams etc.

    What you’re basically saying is that it’s far worse to simply talk about doing something than to actually do it, because the Saints didn’t injure anyone that year, unlike those Giants players and White.

    But please, don’t let facts get in the way of your belief system, God knows we can’t have you using common sense.

  66. clayformvp says: Oct 18, 2012 10:10 PM

    What’s wrong with paying for a big hit? Complete opposite of a bounty to put someone out of the game!!!!

  67. jealst says: Oct 18, 2012 10:12 PM

    cwwgk says:
    Oct 18, 2012 8:30 PM
    Goodell and the league’s lawyers have to be laughing hysterically at this latest tantrum filed by the NFLPA. Not sure how they can even take it seriously. Somebody did something sixteen years ago so therefore the judicial system should vacate the suspensions? This type of argument is what lawyer jokes of made of.

    Pathetic.

    The Saints are being punished for rewarding players if, and ONLY if, an opposing player they hit was injured as a result of the hit.

    Someone needs to save the players from the NFLPA.

    _________________________________

    For an individual who comments on every “bounty” related article, it’s apparent you haven’t fully read any of them with the exception of the initial March 2nd report; that, or you’re just a person who has a strong dislike for the Saints and is willing to make yourself look foolish with comments such as this.

  68. xakle says: Oct 18, 2012 10:16 PM

    bigblueblitz says:
    Oct 18, 2012 8:48 PM
    You do realize that the Saints bounty program is for putting bounty on injuring players, where as this has nothing to with injuries – right?

    You kinda just wrote a really long article about nothing.
    ———————————-

    Saints’ players never paid for injuries. 9 people testified under oath to this fact and both affidavits that the NFL is using in their punishment also state this.

    A ‘cart-off’ was nothing more than a fancy term for a big hit. If that ‘cart off’ led to an injury, no one was paid. If that ‘cart off’ was also the result of an illegal hit, not only were they likely fined by the NFL, but they were fined by Saints’ coaches as well.

    This is all also in the NFL’s ‘evidence’ against the players.

  69. mdd913 says: Oct 18, 2012 10:20 PM

    lorddarkhelmet says: Oct 18, 2012 8:18 PM
    say nothing the fact that there was in fact a bounty to take out the QB which White would never have done.

    —————————————————

    No offense, but you seem to have an awfully inaccurate memory of Reggie White as a player.

  70. houstonoilers says: Oct 18, 2012 10:20 PM

    I do miss the Jacked Up segments on Monday Night Countdown before C’mon man,

  71. louisianafootballfan says: Oct 18, 2012 10:22 PM

    Does anyone else remember Rex Ryan vowing to “put a little hot sauce” on Reggie Bush. How long ago was that? Does anyone else remember the Giants saying they would intentionally go after a SF player’s head in the NFC championship game because of a history of concussions? Where’s the outrage? Where are the investigations? The Saints had the second lowest amount of personal foul penalties during that time. Where are these “cart offs” that you are all convinced meant taking a player out of a game? I guess no money was ever exchanged. How about reporting that the same program fined players for personal fouls? Let’s actually talk apples to apples instead of calling the apple a lampshade.

  72. mdd913 says: Oct 18, 2012 10:22 PM

    thetokyosandblaster says: Oct 18, 2012 8:53 PM

    The key here is “intent to injure” The saints tried knocking people out of games,

    —————————————————–

    Says who? Because unless you have a mind-reading machine, you have no way to know that.

    For such an evil group with guys with agendas to go out and hurt the other team, they somehow managed to knock out not one single opposing offensive player in a three-year span. How do you account for that?

  73. genericuser8888 says: Oct 18, 2012 10:27 PM

    White was paying out money for big hits in order to motivate guys. So was Vilma. Except, the NFL was totally cool with Reggie “motivating” his teammates in this way. Now, it gets you a season long suspension. However you want to see it, it is very easy to see why Vilma and his teammates thought paying for “cart offs” was totally fine. It wasn’t even a punishable offense in 1996. The league was cool with it for crying out loud. Do all you denier’s really believe that the Packers “hard hits” program resulted in no cart offs? You are a fool if you believe that.

    In 1996, the NFL was selling “hard hits” type video tapes and dvd’s. It was a money maker back then.

    Now, “hard hits” cost money. Concussion Lawsuits.

    It’s pretty clear why the league has suddenly gotten serious about “player safety”. The NFL is serious about whatever makes or costs them money. Saints got caught doing the wrong thing at the wrong time. That’s all.

  74. halftermguv says: Oct 18, 2012 10:30 PM

    “The NFL’s stance on that has changed quite a bit in 16 years.”

    Why wouldn’t the stance change? In light of more and more evidence of the long term effects of head trauma it was a given that the it would change. If fact the numerous ex-NFL players filing individual and class actions against the NFL forced their hand to act.

    I wonder how many of the retired players who boasted about how much tougher the NFL was when they played (and that the current players are soft) have signed on to any of the law suits?

  75. squared80 says: Oct 18, 2012 10:40 PM

    *yawn*

    It was a different era. We know so much more about injuries, but more importantly, the NFL is more popular now than at any other time, and they at least have to give the perception that they care what the public thinks.

  76. greeneblitz says: Oct 18, 2012 10:43 PM

    Paying to injure a player and paying for “big hits” are two very different things, even though the difference seems subtle a first glance, a goal of injury crosses a red line, both in the world of sports and with common sense.

  77. mdd913 says: Oct 18, 2012 10:51 PM

    ^

    That’s not the point.

    The point is, the NFL built its empire on violence and the archetype of manly men dishing out that violence. It has been profiting on that for years and still is. And what’s more, that trickled down to all levels of the game and IMO across to other sports as well.

    But now, the league is scapegoating the players for something its own highlight reels, propaganda machines and profit margins created in the first place.

    You cannot promote violence to one audience and then punish the other for supplying it. The league cannot have it both ways.

  78. Great Caesar's Ghost says: Oct 18, 2012 10:53 PM

    steelernationfartsinyourfaceandwinschampionships says: Oct 18, 2012 7:37 PM

    6 rings

    ___

    Only six?

  79. christopher525 says: Oct 18, 2012 10:59 PM

    The big difference is one little part of the statement about the payouts “as long as the amounts are not exorbitant.” A $500 payment is much different than paying $10,000 to take out a QB who’s been playing the best football he’s played in YEARS, in a major playoff game that leads to your team making the Super Bowl.

  80. dr45acp says: Oct 18, 2012 11:07 PM

    double standard….still have yet to see 1 oz. of “eveidence”. And NFL Films has been putting out “biggest hits” programs for years….big hits puts butts in the seats & tv’s tune in every sunday for the big hits….it’s all BS and will only get worse….Goodell needs to step down so the NFL can save face while there’s still time to do so….

  81. dr45acp says: Oct 18, 2012 11:11 PM

    also….There will always be concussions in football…..there is no way to get around it. You can invent the ultimate helmet but your brain will & always bounce around in your skull….If ppl think this magic helmet exists…. you’re crazy & uninformed…

  82. jimmerg31385 says: Oct 18, 2012 11:16 PM

    A big difference you’re overlooking is that this was in in 1996. As best I can tell the year now is 2012. Much like the rules about contact with receivers downfield, hits to the head, etc., it’s possible the NFL’s definition of conduct detrimental to the game has changed.

  83. cwwgk says: Oct 18, 2012 11:24 PM

    @jealst: I have nothing against the Saints as an organization, nor any NFL team for that matter. I have kept abreast of this saga because litigation in sports interests me. What is most intriguing is the strategy the players have employed while trying to defend themselves.

    Anyone with the slightest amount of legal training and courtroom experience recognizes the NFL conducted a thorough investigation and amassed significant evidence in support of its allegations. Is the evidence airtight? No. But this isn’t CSI, it’s the real world. And what the NFL has produced to date exceeds probably more than the vast majority of cases that are successfully litigated every day in this country.

    All the players have done is complain about Goodell and the disciplinary process to which they agreed. Stated another way, they’re complaining about the person they signed a contract with and the contract itself.

    Despite what may be “apparent” to you, I’ve read the statement issued by the Saints promising never to operate a bounty program again. I’ve read the joint statement from Loomis and Payton acknowledging the NFL’s allegations are true. I’ve read Gregg Williams written statement detailing the program he operated which rewarded players for injuring the opposition. I’ve read Judge Berrigan’s comments that she agreed that Vilma admitted in her courtroom to what Goodell has accused him of.

    But the players don’t want to address this evidence head on. They had the opportunity to cross examine witnesses and put on their own evidence during the appeal hearing this past summer. Instead, they walked out like and started complaining to the media.

    And now the players are trying to rely on what happened sixteen years ago to defend themselves now? That is what is pathetic.

    And the act of fools.

  84. bathroomben7 says: Oct 18, 2012 11:29 PM

    There’s a world of difference between paying for big hits and paying people to seriously hurt specific players with illegal cheap shots. Guys like Ray Nitschke and Dick Butkus delivered big hits and were physical but were clean. The Saints were dirty and cheap, not tough or good at what they did. And then there’s (as has already been mentioned) the fact that they were told not to do it, did it anyway, and then lied about it and tried to cover it up.

  85. importrx7 says: Oct 18, 2012 11:37 PM

    I’m confused as how this shows inconstant enforcement when it was over 15 years ago, and under a different commissioner. If it were the same commissioner i could understand the reasoning but this makes zero sense.

  86. granadafan says: Oct 18, 2012 11:41 PM

    Vilma doesn’t get it. Rules change. If you don’t obey the NEW rules, expect the league to come down on you. Head to head hits used to be legal and huge hits were glorified on NFL Films with the NFL’s blessing. Now they’re illegal thanks to the lawyers.

  87. bigbadal21 says: Oct 19, 2012 12:13 AM

    You can moan and groan all you want saying the NFL is 2-faced and there is no difference even when the difference is as plain as can be. In 1996 the NFL said it was ok. In 2010 they said it was not ok. If the NFL said it was not ok and Reggie kept doing it and lied about it and the NFL did not punish Reggie then it would be relevant. Rules change, deal with it.

  88. skolvikes says: Oct 19, 2012 12:27 AM

    Can anyone of the people that are suggesting to us that the Saints term of “cart-off” meant an injury explain to us how the Saints tallied 66 “cart-offs” during the 2009 season in the evidence presented by the NFL?

    66 cart-offs in one year, and you’re trying to tell us that those are injuries caused?

  89. robf2010 says: Oct 19, 2012 12:30 AM

    “Guys like Ray Nitschke and Dick Butkus delivered big hits and were physical but were clean.”

    Oh, man, the only thing in this life that I’m fairly sure of is that you never saw those guys play. Those guys were hard-hitting, vicious, mean, and every kind of dirty. They weren’t exactly Ty Cobb mean but they weren’t that far off. Their images have cleaned up considerably over the years. Stick to names like Olsen and Ham.

  90. mdd913 says: Oct 19, 2012 12:37 AM

    cwwgk says: Oct 18, 2012 11:24 PM
    Despite what may be “apparent” to you, I’ve read the statement issued by the Saints promising never to operate a bounty program again. I’ve read the joint statement from Loomis and Payton acknowledging the NFL’s allegations are true. I’ve read Gregg Williams written statement detailing the program he operated which rewarded players for injuring the opposition. I’ve read Judge Berrigan’s comments that she agreed that Vilma admitted in her courtroom to what Goodell has accused him of.

    —————————————————

    You’re lying.

    Not a single Saints’ coach, player or executive has EVER admitted to a pay-for-injury scheme. Many players and coaches have denied it, some of them vehemently and in federal court. Not even Gregg Williams has admitted to a pay-for-injury scheme.

    If you had truly read all the documentation as you say, you would know that.

    So again, I say it: You’re lying.

  91. namelessfacelessfan says: Oct 19, 2012 12:45 AM

    BTW, the NFL’s two star witnesses’?
    They can’t even agree where the supposed 10k in cash went.

    Cerullo claims he picked Vilma’s 10k up off the table and gave it to Williams.

    Williams claims he never received any money.

    Pick which one if the liar but you must toss the other statement out.

  92. mwindle1973 says: Oct 19, 2012 2:52 AM

    Regardless of anyone personal opinion, what the article fails to mention, is this is just a big PR move by the NFLPA. As far as the court case it’s irrelevant. And also we have no specific proof that the NFL said it was alright yet. So I want to know there is a document that shows the NFL said it and it’s not just hearsay on the NFLPA’s part. But even if it’s true it has no bearing in the current case, as we are under a different CBA. Only this CBA and this Commissioner matters in this court case. And there are specific rules against under the table incentives of any type, whether paid by a team or the players on the team.

  93. bamboozle99 says: Oct 19, 2012 4:17 AM

    Correction. The average uninformed NFL fan thinks that Spygate was limited to filming opposing teams practice and only existed for the 2007 season.

  94. saintswillwin says: Oct 19, 2012 6:06 AM

    “The NFL’s stance on that has changed quite a bit in 16 years.”

    Yup. And the Saints were warned not to do it, continued to do it, lied to NFL investigators, and are now being punished.

    Apples and oranges.

    How can the league “warn” the Saints about something that isn’t illegal?

    The Saints were told to stop a ‘bounty’ program, which they weren’t doing, which is also why the the league has zero proof, other than the allegations of a fired/disgruntled employee!

  95. stellarperformance says: Oct 19, 2012 7:48 AM

    If you have enough money you will never be found guilty of anything. That’s the message the players are sending.

  96. sdisme says: Oct 19, 2012 9:38 AM

    @cwwgk

    But the players don’t want to address this evidence head on. They had the opportunity to cross examine witnesses and put on their own evidence during the appeal hearing this past summer. Instead, they walked out like and started complaining to the media.
    _____________________________

    The only thing they are asking for is to address the evidence head on.

    The thing the NFL is fighting is them cross examining witnesses.

  97. muskyhunter2542 says: Oct 19, 2012 10:02 AM

    Great Caesar’s Ghost says:
    Oct 18, 2012 10:53 PM
    steelernationfartsinyourfaceandwinschampionships says: Oct 18, 2012 7:37 PM

    6 rings

    ___

    Only six?

    _______

    Dont The Packers have 13 or something like that???

  98. bbk1000 says: Oct 19, 2012 10:14 AM

    And in the 30’s they wore leather football helmets…what’s the point?

  99. raidershero says: Oct 19, 2012 10:27 AM

    Funny no one has mentioned Siragusa’s CAREER ENDING hit on Rich Gannon that wasn’t even penalized, let alone fined. Not as blatant as Harris but damn, it was dirty as hell. I think the big deal about the Saints is simply to set precedent and set the tone for future generations of NFL players. The times are changing and policy must shift with it, like it or not. It would be nice if there was a panel that ultimately decided these things rather than Goodell. Even if he makes a just decision he’s still going to be scrutinized. One man doesn’t need all that power. Absolute power corrupts absolutely.

  100. axespray says: Oct 19, 2012 2:31 PM

    thejuddstir says:
    Oct 18, 2012 8:39 PM
    “Any other team and it might be “newsworthy” but this is just another example in a long list of “exceptions” that are granted to the Packers and only the Packers.”
    ——————————–
    weren’t the vikings dline instructed to aim low when sacking the QB back in the John Randle days?

    wasn’t it 2 weeks ago when every call went against us, you said to quit whining, now we won and you’re back to “Packers are handed everything! – wah!”

    smh…

  101. jazzytrav says: Oct 19, 2012 3:25 PM

    How are these things remotely similar? “Hitting” is part of football, and something taught in practice every day. Players are taught how to hit hard legally and within the rules. That does not include “cart-offs”. Paying a player to knock another player out of a game is a completely different story.

    Also, I’ll pile on to the number of people saying it was a different game back then. I loved watching “Jacked Up” as much as anyone else, but the more we understand about the science of head injuries, the more a message needs to be sent that the league will not tolerate offering motivation and incentive for those kinds of injuries.

  102. castleofcheese says: Oct 19, 2012 4:34 PM

    Did Reggie ever say, “kill the head”?

  103. derakbrady says: Oct 19, 2012 5:00 PM

    It was as recent as 2007 that Packers had a PFP system. They were asked to stop. I assume they did. Only making the point that it isn’t as rare as a lot of fans think. I am not debating any Bounty systems or PFP. Only stating my point.

  104. derakbrady says: Oct 19, 2012 5:05 PM

    And for those that say irreverent, apples and oranges must be packers fans.

    Just my opinion. Not debating. Only stating my point. “When it’s my team”.

    -unashamed Saints Fan!

  105. truecowboyfan says: Oct 19, 2012 5:47 PM

    I know this is when Reggie was with the Packers but I was using the Eagles and the original Fat A** Head Coach Buddy Ryan as an example the whole time for bounties.

    Especially because of the Thanksgiving game against the Cowboys in 1989 where it was way overly apparent that there were bounties on many Cowboys including Troy Aikman who was nailed waaaaayyyy after a whistle for a false start.

  106. teamnorsecore says: Oct 20, 2012 2:12 AM

    This is a surprise? The Packers have always played by a different set of rules and standards. From Lambeau Leaps to the hometown refs….anythings goes for the Green and Gold. Besides, God probably told Reggie to do this.

  107. anythingbutyanks says: Oct 22, 2012 9:47 PM

    Reggie rewarded players for essentially doing their jobs well. The Saints targeted specific players and aimed to actually injure opposing players enough to force them out of the game. There is a pretty big difference between the two. Add to it what others have mentioned- that the Saints were asked about it and lied, told to stop and did not- and the situations are as dissimilar as they could be.

  108. filthymcnasty1 says: Oct 22, 2012 11:22 PM

    Re: teamnorsecore says: Oct 20, 2012 2:12 AM

    “This is a surprise? The Packers have always played by a different set of rules and standards.”

    Just like Jordan. The best get treated like the best. And the also rans whine about it.

  109. nyneal says: Oct 23, 2012 5:21 AM

    Champs794 — Your comment that it’s no secret the NFL makes an exception for the Packers is a ridiculous statement. Did they make an exception when the replacement officials made one of the worst calls in the history of the NFL and gave a game to the Seahawks that the Packers clearly won?
    The Packers have won more NFL Championships than any other team. They are the greatest franchise in NFL history, period. And also the most unique, since they are owned by stockholders which are ordinary fans rather than millionaire jerks like Jerry Jones, for instance.
    If you are jealous of the Packers, that’s fine. But your whining about exceptional treatment for the Packers is silly.

  110. fsf7 says: Oct 24, 2012 12:47 AM

    j0esixpack says: Oct 18, 2012 7:30 PM

    With most fans clueless, even to this day, that signal taping is allowed by the NFL, Goodell capitulated to an ignorant fan base that thanks to Goodell, still believes the Patriots’ 2001, 2003 & 2004 Super Bowls are invalid because they violated a 2006 rule during the 2007 season.

    Now he’s trying to do the same thing to the Saints.

    Ultimately there is only one real “rule” in the NFL. If you make Roger Goodell look bad, expect to endure suspensions, fines, and lost draft picks regardless of the rules.
    ————————————————-
    Please spare us “ignorant fans” another desperate attempt by a Pasterisk fan to validate tainted Super Bowl wins. Denial is a state that hasn’t been admitted to the United States, but it’s where you are living.

    Goodell’s handling of Spygate was a complete 180 from Bountygate. He did not capitulate to the fans on Spygate, he instead swept it under the rug (destroying the evidence) because the damage it could cause the league and credibility.

    With Bountygate, it’s a complete over-reaction to the safety issue, which Goodell himself brought immense attention to in October of 2010 when he changed the rules in midseason about hitting. This time, he’s trying to protect against the lawsuit.

    Spygate: Cheating and getting caught. Bountygate: For use in the courtroom due to former players lawsuit.

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