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Old 08-10-2012, 09:20 AM    (permalink
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These are tweets minute by minute

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Judge Berrigan: I do think you exhausted remedies before Mr. Goodell. You were thwarted at every turn by Goodell. Penalties were too harsh
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Judge Berrigan: if I can find a way to legally do it, I will rule in Vilma's favor.
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Old 08-13-2012, 05:55 PM    (permalink
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State police found no evidence in the whole "wiretapping" story against Saints GM Mickey Loomis

http://www.nola.com/saints/index.ssf...w_orleans.html
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Old 08-13-2012, 10:38 PM    (permalink
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Love how all these allegations are turning up to be nothing. Goodell is gonna have egg on his face when these bounty suspensions get overturned for NO evidence.
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Old 08-14-2012, 01:14 AM    (permalink
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The most irritating part of this whole ordeal is how the Saints organization and some of their fans refuse to acknowledge even the slightest degree of wrongdoing amidst all of these allegations.

Judge Berrigan won’t be the one to leave Commissioner Goodell with egg on his face either. As far as I understand it, even if she finds legal ground to stand on and rules in favor of the suspended, the NFL will file an immediate appeal and their punishments would persist pending the outcome of further litigation. The NFL won’t just accept her ruling as just, admit their errors to the fans, tuck their tail between their legs, and let the suspended Saints return. That’s not going to happen. Goodell being emasculated in a court of law is a disaster scenario for NFL leadership. Their team of legal experts will dedicate whatever resources are needed to fight that to the bitter end and a business that grossed over $9 billion last calendar isn’t going to be light on resources.

Granted, it is clear Goodell doesn’t want to be deposed for a reason. The popular speculation is a total absence of evidence. Here’s another spin though. I don’t think it’s out of the question, and even find it quite believable, that Goodell is resisting coming forward because it would mean surrendering his sources. Sources that could be current or former members of their roster. Sources that could be current or former members of their coaching staff. Sources that could be current or former members of their front office. It makes perfect sense for Goodell to want to protect those that cooperated with the NFL’s investigation. And being leaked as the whistleblower behind the Saints scandal would be a near death sentence to their NFL careers.

In pro football, the dirt is supposed to be covered up, not uncovered. A lot of coaches and front office people would withhold their trust. And, if it was a player that came forward with the “bounty” evidence, it’s a volatile on-field situation. “Snitch” culture in locker rooms across all sports is despised. If their name is revealed, you’re looking at a player who is universally despised at best and the victim of a vigilante-inspired cheap shot at worst.

For the record, I think the NFL parading the “bounties” term around is a little misleading because it carries a strong connotation. It suggests active head-hunting or cheap shot-taking with conscious intent to injure. Intent to injure is a difficult thing to prove in a full-contract sport like football. There’s an argument to be made that defenders want to hurt the ball carrier at the end of each snap. Hard-hitting and intimidation are core defensive principles. You want to break wills, and if bones are broken in the process, then so be it. But attempting to differentiate or legislate hurt vs. injure is impossible.

Even if the intent to inflict injuries was absent, New Orleans still broke the rules. In the collective bargaining agreement, it specifies on-field performance incentives are illegal. The NFLPA agreed to those contents last summer. Whether the hits were delivered with intent to injure doesn’t matter. Whether the hits were delivered in a legal fashion doesn’t matter. What matters is that Goodell believes he has evidence that supports some Saints being rewarded for on-field performance, including delivering big hits, which is a direct violation of the CBA and subject to his rulings. That’s his case. And the punishments he placed on them were to serve the end of all punishments. To act as a clear, decisive deterrent for potential offenders in the future. Given how severe the suspensions were, people around the NFL have taken notice. Who knows if the message will be heard or if it will fall of deaf ears, but it’s worth pointing out Goodell’s intent. And this is coming from someone that has been critical of Goodell in the past.

What amuses me out of all of this is that the NFLPA pushed the owners during the lockout for a greater breadth and higher standard of post-retirement medical care. Which is a fair bargaining point. But now, we’ve got allegations of NFLPA members conspiring on bounties against other NFLPA members and a tidal wave of NFLPA members complaining about the qualitative softness of football and even going as far as undermining the league’s new health efforts. The NFLPA wants protection from the NFL, but the NFLPA can’t even protect themselves from themselves.
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Old 08-14-2012, 07:26 AM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by saintsfan912 View Post
Love how all these allegations are turning up to be nothing. Goodell is gonna have egg on his face when these bounty suspensions get overturned for NO evidence.
You know except for the fact that Greg Williams admitted this was going on. But yeah you're right there is NO evidence, the NFL probably made Williams lie about that.
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Old 08-14-2012, 05:22 PM    (permalink
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If it was so cut and dry wouldn't this be over? Why would a judge rule against the nfl if the evidence was so damning against the players? Still trying to figure out where the referees were when all these illegal death hits took place. And if it's so illegal to get paid to play well, why do running backs and QBs get to take their offensive lineman out/buy them expensive watches?

On a side note. What is the NFL doing about all these DUIs from the offseason? I'm much more concerned with players risking innocent peoples lives driving drunk than I am about players playing football.
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Old 08-14-2012, 05:26 PM    (permalink
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And if it's so illegal to get paid to play well, why do running backs and QBs get to take their offensive lineman out/buy them expensive watches?
from personal experience (well not the expensive watches part), skill players take lineman out to show appreciation.
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Old 08-14-2012, 05:32 PM    (permalink
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I really don't think anyone should defend the paying for performance. That's why we have contracts and the salary cap. I don't think we should be hammering guys for showing appreciation or even throwing bets down if they are together, it's their money... but an active pool that is coordinated by a team is sketchy.

I still think some of the suspensions and such were too harsh only because it seems like a big case of making an example so other teams won't let this happen again.

Just give us back Sean Payton after 8 games! The NFL does seem to be showing a very weak hand in this poker game though.
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Old 08-14-2012, 07:43 PM    (permalink
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I actually think the heaviest toll should fall on Payton, He is the HC, it;s his job to run the team and follow/execute directives from the league office. No one is arguing that the bounty system was a rules infraction (haven't we been over this enough), but don't paint us out to be a bunch of shady villains when what we were paid for was not illegal on the field.
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Old 08-14-2012, 08:36 PM    (permalink
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I actually think the heaviest toll should fall on Payton, He is the HC, it;s his job to run the team and follow/execute directives from the league office. No one is arguing that the bounty system was a rules infraction (haven't we been over this enough), but don't paint us out to be a bunch of shady villains when what we were paid for was not illegal on the field.
You were told to stop multiple times and continued to ignore the warnings.
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Old 08-14-2012, 09:12 PM    (permalink
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You know except for the fact that Greg Williams admitted this was going on. But yeah you're right there is NO evidence, the NFL probably made Williams lie about that.
Dan Patrick and someone else (Jay Glazer I think) said that Greg Williams wrote down what he was going to say to the media but the NFL said No this what you are going to say. Dan Patrick also said the reason Williams agreed to w/e the NFL wrote so Greg Williams would have a chance to coach again in the NFL.
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Old 08-14-2012, 09:21 PM    (permalink
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Williams wants to be in the NFL again because he knew what he was doing was wrong.
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Old 08-14-2012, 09:28 PM    (permalink
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Williams wants to be in the NFL again because he knew what he was doing was wrong.
He wants to be in the NFL again because he wants to coach again.

Where is the evidence again? a game where the defense of players get injured? A video where they claim Hargrove ask for his money even though he was not part of the play that injured Favre?also he might of not been the one that said he give me money. Or the email of a picture dog the bounty hunter?
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Old 08-14-2012, 09:29 PM    (permalink
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You were told to stop multiple times and continued to ignore the warnings.
That's why I feel Payton should have the punishment he does. I th.ink we are saying the same thing

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hyperbole is a piss poor way to defend an argument.


right, because the idea was that they were just getting performance bonuses for making some tackles. totally intellectually honest.
But that's the point. The image that we were going out there to injur and mame on purpose is erroneous. The style of play that ensued was no different than if there had been no bounty. To portray those players as vile people because they received "pay for play" is the key issue of the debate. No one is debating that the system was a rules infraction, but if our style of play was so hideously dangerous there would be evidence on film, and that just isnt the case in a multitude of situations.
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Old 08-14-2012, 09:46 PM    (permalink
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He wants to be in the NFL again because he wants to coach again.

Where is the evidence again? a game where the defense of players get injured? A video where they claim Hargrove ask for his money even though he was not part of the play that injured Favre?also he might of not been the one that said he give me money. Or the email of a picture dog the bounty hunter?
Are you kidding? Use some common sense. Why would Williams lie about a bounty program that never took place?

Quote:
“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,” Williams said. “It was a terrible mistake, and we knew it was wrong while we were doing it. Instead of getting caught up in it, I should have stopped it. I take full responsibility for my role. I am truly sorry. I have learned a hard lesson and I guarantee that I will never participate in or allow this kind of activity to happen again.”
He admitted it was going on and you think the NFL made him admit to this so he could coach again? That's some conspiracy. The Saints cult is getting close to the Penn Staters.
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Old 08-14-2012, 09:48 PM    (permalink
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Then share with us all what the other "issue" was.
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Old 08-14-2012, 10:14 PM    (permalink
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Are you kidding? Use some common sense. Why would Williams lie about a bounty program that never took place?



He admitted it was going on and you think the NFL made him admit to this so he could coach again? That's some conspiracy. The Saints cult is getting close to the Penn Staters.
He read what was given to him so he could coach again. What conspiracy theory? That is what Dan Patrick and Jay Glazer(I think one of the insiders) said.I doubt they are part of some saints cult.
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Old 08-14-2012, 10:22 PM    (permalink
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He read what was given to him so he could coach again. What conspiracy theory? That is what Dan Patrick and Jay Glazer(I think one of the insiders) said.I doubt they are part of some saints cult.
What are you even arguing? Why would Williams admit to what he did and take a suspension when according to you nothing was going on?
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Old 08-14-2012, 10:33 PM    (permalink
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What are you even arguing? Why would Williams admit to what he did and take a suspension when according to you nothing was going on?
Again he agreed to was written because he wants to coach in the NFL again. I never said there was nothing going and the players even said they were getting paid for performance not bounties.It is against the rules for coaches to pay players for performance.
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Old 08-14-2012, 10:37 PM    (permalink
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Again he agreed to was written because he wants to coach in the NFL again. I never said there was nothing going and the players even said they were getting paid for performance not bounties.It is against the rules for coaches to pay players for performance.
So you don't think it was a bounty program but rather Williams paying players who performed well?
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Old 08-14-2012, 10:46 PM    (permalink
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So you don't think it was a bounty program but rather Williams paying players who performed well?
Peter King even said that the evidence they showed to the selected media members looked more like pay for performance than bounty.
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Old 08-15-2012, 03:25 AM    (permalink
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In hindsight, the NFL shouldn’t have labeled them as bounties if their evidence in that department was lacking because it requires a higher burden of proof. (For the record, again, claiming the NFL has no evidence is a dangerous assumption to make. Absence of evidence available doesn’t indicate absence of evidence existence. That’s an important distinction here. Let’s wait until the court proceedings conclude before making concrete determinations.)

As I said, placing bounties on someone implies that there is active head-hunting with intent to injure going on. That’s a tough motive to prove because it is in a defender’s code to want to dominate and rough his opponent up, so it’s difficult to characterize the difference between seeking to hurt and seeking to injure. No one can argue the other aspects of the case though. The Saints fostered a program that circumvented the cap and paid people for their on-field performances and ignored the NFL when asked to shelve it. The ugliest rewards coming from lighting an opponent up and removing him from the game. Thus, the platform for the discussion of bounties was raised.

This is the source of some people’s irritation toward the Saints. New Orleans knew what was happening was wrong, but never made an honest attempt to discontinue it. Now, the people who participated in the purported misconduct are acting like the victims. Like the NFL is marshalling all of their strength for some kind of irrational crusade against them for who knows what reason. And that’s not what is happening here. The Saints broke the rules. Rule-breakers get punished. It’s the natural order of things. So no one wants to hear Drew Brees whine to the media about how unfair it is. No one wants to hear Jonathan Vilma claim he’s the target of a character assassination. No one wants to hear fans defend the indefensible. No one wants to hear it.

Was the punishment on the harsh side? It sure was. But Goodell is committed to at least maintaining the public appearance that long-term health is his chief concern. He couldn’t slap the Saints on the wrist when the media ran wild with the narrative of borderline reckless hits that were designed to injure and even incentivized carting people off. It makes him look weak where he’s made an effort to look strong. He needed to reinforce his point, so he made an example out of the first offender he could.

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If it was so cut and dry wouldn't this be over? Why would a judge rule against the nfl if the evidence was so damning against the players?
Because this isn’t a black-and-white issue. For Goodell, or for the Saints, for that matter.

I think it’s worth pointing out that the suspended plaintiffs haven’t won their legal battles either. Their court date was the 10th and no ruling has been made. Just look at the tweet attributed to the presiding judge: “If I can find a way to legally do it, I will rule in Vilma’s favor.”

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Still trying to figure out where the referees were when all these illegal death hits took place.
Doesn’t matter where the referees were. The hits never had to be flagged as personal fouls or recognized as extra vicious to be deemed illegal and in violation of the CBA.

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And if it's so illegal to get paid to play well, why do running backs and QBs get to take their offensive lineman out/buy them expensive watches?
You’re talking about teammates showing appreciation for other teammates. Not defenders accepting side cash from teammates after injuring an opponent.

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On a side note. What is the NFL doing about all these DUIs from the offseason? I'm much more concerned with players risking innocent peoples lives driving drunk than I am about players playing football.
The NFL can handle both. It’s not a this-or-that proposition. And this scandal has a direct correlation to their on-field product.

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Dan Patrick and someone else (Jay Glazer I think) said that Greg Williams wrote down what he was going to say to the media but the NFL said No this what you are going to say. Dan Patrick also said the reason Williams agreed to w/e the NFL wrote so Greg Williams would have a chance to coach again in the NFL.
If the NFL didn’t have a shred of evidence, as has been suggested in this thread, for what reason would Williams cave? Seems like he should’ve fought harder if that were the case. Knowing he’s buried in all likelihood regardless.

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Then share with us all what the other "issue" was.
I don’t want to put words in njx’s mouth, but I believe he’s stating even the existence of the “bounties” is the reason this is such a hot issue. Intent to injure might not be present or provable, but according to the NFL, Saint defenders were still paid for dealing out punishing hits to the opposing team that resulted in “knockouts” or “cart-offs”. The other issue being if this was a simpler structure that just paid defenders for their on-field performances, such as interceptions or tackles for a loss. Which, of course, would still be against the rules.
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Old 09-07-2012, 03:26 PM    (permalink
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Vilma, Smith, and Hargrove win appeals and eligible to play week 1.

Hargrove was released by the Packers earlier this preseason.
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Old 09-07-2012, 03:28 PM    (permalink
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Hopefully that **** can finally just go. the ****. AWAY. I don't want to hear about it ever again. I got sick of the squabbling. Saints fans can go circle jerk somewhere about getting their mediocre middle linebacker back.
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Old 09-07-2012, 03:43 PM    (permalink
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Peter King even said that the evidence they showed to the selected media members looked more like pay for performance than bounty.
Even if it is, it's still illegal by the same rules.
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