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Fit just hit the shan for the Saints  Rate Topic 
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 Posted: Fri Mar 2nd, 2012 09:11 pm
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DaNkinator



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No NFL team whose city hosts the Super Bowl has ever played in that game.  And the Saints will be launching their effort to do so with a very dark cloud hanging over the franchise.
The league announced Friday afternoon that the Saints violated the “bounty rule” in 2009, 2010, and 2011.  Specifically, the NFL has concluded that between 22 and 27 defensive players along with at least one assistant coach maintained a “bounty” program.  It was funded primarily by players, with $50,000 or more available during the 2009 playoffs.
Commissioner Roger Goodell will impose discipline.  To date, the punishment has not been determined.
“The payments here are particularly troubling because they involved not just payments for ‘performance,’ but also for injuring opposing players,” Commissioner Goodell said in a league-issued release.  “The bounty rule promotes two key elements of NFL football:  player safety and competitive integrity.
“It is our responsibility to protect player safety and the integrity of our game, and this type of conduct will not be tolerated.  We have made significant progress in changing the culture with respect to player safety and we are not going to relent.  We have more work to do and we will do it.”
The league’s release says that the program was administered by former Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams, and that it included payments not only for fumbles and interceptions but also for inflicting injuries that resulted in players being carried off the field ($1,000) and/or knocked out of the game ($1,500).
The release also states that coach Sean Payton, while not involved in the program directly, was aware of it and did nothing to stop it.
General Manager Mickey Loomis also has been implicated; though the relevant portion of the release is a bit unclear, it appears that Loomis may have lied to owner Tom Benson about the existence of a bounty program and/or failed to carry out Benson’s directive that it be ended.
The league will work with the NFLPA to determine the appropriate sanction, and the penalties can include fines, suspensions, and/or the forfeiture of draft choices.  Benson may decide to take more drastic action, especially if he believes that Loomis either lied or otherwise defied the owner of the team.
We’ll have much more to come on this one.  There is plenty of information to digest in the league’s press release, which the NFL wisely dumped on a late Friday afternoon.  Though the league deserves credit for not brushing this under the rug, the NFL has been forced to announce to the world that another one of its teams has been caught cheating — and doing so in a way that encouraged injury to opposing players.  Thus, even though the Saints look like anything but, these activities also have applied a black eye to the NFL.  It’s no surprise that the news is coming in the one portion of the work-week news cycle where embarrassing stories go to die.

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 Posted: Fri Mar 2nd, 2012 09:36 pm
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ChrisOTL

 

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The league will HAMMER them for this. I'm sure this dude made some cash for this hit:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9CC1mpi7hIM&feature=player_embedded

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 Posted: Fri Mar 2nd, 2012 10:13 pm
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BayouBoogie



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Odd that they're just now doing this. I don't know if "bounties" were public, but Gregg Williams has never made any bones about the fact coaches players to hurt other players.

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 Posted: Fri Mar 2nd, 2012 10:22 pm
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mike3775



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BayouBoogie wrote: Odd that they're just now doing this. I don't know if "bounties" were public, but Gregg Williams has never made any bones about the fact coaches players to hurt other players.I bet its just like spygate, every team does it, just they got caught.  This probably still goes on as well, just its kept to a minimum on discussion and any talk happens on days off

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 Posted: Fri Mar 2nd, 2012 10:39 pm
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Benlen



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DaNkinator wrote:
No NFL team whose city hosts the Super Bowl has ever played in that game. 

I may be wrong but I think the 1984 SB with the Niners was scheduled to be at Candlestick Park but there were earthquake concerns and the game was shifted to Stanford 20 minutes away.



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 Posted: Fri Mar 2nd, 2012 10:41 pm
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BayouBoogie



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Benlen wrote:
DaNkinator wrote:
No NFL team whose city hosts the Super Bowl has ever played in that game. 

I may be wrong but I think the 1984 SB with the Niners was scheduled to be at Candlestick Park but there were earthquake concerns and the game was shifted to Stanford 20 minutes away.


Wiki says it was Stanford all along, per a vote in 1982.

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 Posted: Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 01:53 am
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mike3775



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Peter King wrote a decent article breaking it down on CNNSI


The National Football League on Friday found the New Orleans Saints guilty of a wide-ranging system of bounty payments to between 22 and 27 defensive players from 2009 through 2011, and player-safety-conscious commissioner Roger Goodell could bring the hammer down very hard on the franchise.


The most alarming finding by the league, according to one club source who was briefed on the investigation late Friday afternoon, was this: Before the 2009 NFC Championship Game, Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma offered any defensive teammate $10,000 in cash to knock then-Vikings quarterback Brett Favre out of the game. Favre was hit viciously several times in the game. Favre told SI.com Friday evening: "I'm not pissed. It's football. I don't think anything less of those guys."


The details of Vilma's offer were in a report to the 32 NFL owners, sent out by the league to detail further what the league's 50,000-page investigation found.


Early indications late Friday afternoon were that the sanctions against the Saints and their former defensive coordinator who the league said administered the bounties, Gregg Williams, will be severe. The league said the penalties could include suspensions, fines and loss of draft choices -- the latter of which could be particularly damaging to the Saints, who do not own a first-round pick this year. Their first choice will be late in the second round, the 59th overall ... unless Goodell takes the pick away.


Goodell is angry about this sustained use of paying players to hurt players on other teams. There's little doubt the penalties on the Saints will be worse than what the league did to the Patriots for the Spygate scandal in 2007. Coach Bill Belichick was fined $500,000 and the franchise fined $250,000 and docked a first-round draft choice for videotaping opponents' signals during games in violation of league rules. It would not be surprising, judging by the seriousness of the findings, that Williams, recently hired as the defensive coordinator of the Rams, would face a multi-game suspension.


At 5:30 p.m. ET on Friday, Williams issued an apology: "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."


A stern Goodell and a team of NFL officials -- league counsel Jeff Pash and NFL Security officials who headed up the investigation -- summoned Saints coach Sean Payton and general manager Mickey Loomis to New York Thursday to inform them of the seriousness of the investigation. Then Pash flew to New Orleans Thursday night to brief Saints owner Tom Benson.


Payton, the league says, was not "a direct participant'' in the bounty program but was aware of it and did nothing to stop it. Loomis could be in more trouble. The league claims Loomis was told by Benson to stop the program and didn't.


The league said there was an initial investigation, after the 2009 season, into a bounty system led by Williams that could not be corroborated. Then, Goodell said "significant and credible'' new information was forthcoming late in the 2011 season that led to the findings the league acted on Friday. Those conclusions found that Saints players were paid off-the-books incentives for some outstanding performances such as interceptions -- obviously in violation of the league's salary cap -- as well as $1,000 and $1,500 payments for injuring opposing players.


"The payments here are particularly troubling because they involved not just payments for performance, but also for injuring opposing players," Goodell said in a league statement Friday afternoon. The bounty rule, Goodell said, protects "two key elements of NFL football: player safety and competitive integrity. It is our responsibility to protect player safety and the integrity of our game, and this type of conduct will not be tolerated. We have made significant progress in changing the culture with respect to player safety and we are not going to relent. We have more work to do and we will do it."


The league, led by director of investigative services Joe Hummel and chief league security officer Jeff Miller, discovered these violations:


• Players pooled their own money to fund the bounty club, and players were paid $1,500 if a foe was knocked out of the game, and $1,000 if an opponent was carted off the field.


• Between 22 and 27 players contributed to the bounty pool over a three-year period, with amounts guaranteed if a certain opposing player was knocked out of the game.


• Williams occasionally reached into his own pocket to contribute to the bounty pool.


• Benson said when he was informed of the new and credible evidence that the bounty program was going strong after the 2011 season, he directed Loomis to make sure the program ceased. "There is no evidence that Mr. Loomis took any effective action to stop these practices,'' the league's statement said.


Surprisingly, the biggest target of the bounties, Favre, wasn't upset about the news when reached Friday night. He said bounties are a part of the game. "Said or unsaid, guys do it anyway," Favre said. "If they can drill you and get you out [of the game], they will."


Since mid-2010, when a spate of head injuries ratcheted up the NFL's attention to player safety, Goodell has been nearly manic about player safety. The league has heavily fined players for excessive and late hits on players, and Goodell's relationship with many prominent players in the league has been radically affected because of it. That's why the penalties in this case will be significantly more severe -- almost certainly -- than what was levied on the Patriots four seasons ago. It's hard enough for players to stay on the field in the first place, never mind when a team is purposely trying to injure them.


That's why you can expect Goodell to issue the most severe penalties of his six-year reign on the Saints as soon as late this month. Players will be watching this case closely, particularly heavily fined players like James Harrison. If Williams gets away without a six-figure fine plus suspension, players will think Goodell is softer on the ringleaders than the players.


Messages to Williams, Payton and Loomis were not immediately returned to SI.com Friday afternoon. Saints owner Tom Benson issued this statement: "I have been made aware of the NFL's findings relative to the 'Bounty Rule' and how it relates to our club. I have offered and the NFL has received our full cooperation in their investigation. While the findings may be troubling, we look forward to putting this behind us and winning more championships in the future for our fans."


It could be a while, a long while, before the findings, as Benson calls them, can be put behind the Saints.



Favre's comments surprise me, but he is right, this is just going to continue, and they will just be more careful about it in the future, much like spygate made teams get better at stealing signs

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 Posted: Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 01:54 am
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Road Warrior Yajuta



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http://www.usatoday.com/sports/football/nfl/packers/2007-11-26-nfl-ruling_N.htm

Why did the NFL not throw the book at the Packers?  Where was the discussion of fines, loss of draft picks, and player suspensions for them?  I have zero issue with them trying to stop this, but I have never cared for double standards or inequity when it comes to discipline.  The Packers got not one bit of censure from the NFL.  Under Goodhell's watch.  If they lay the hammer down the Saints need to fight it as there is precedent set by the league and this Commissioner to take no punitive action. 



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 Posted: Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 01:55 am
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Road Warrior Yajuta



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Oh and as has been said this has been known for quite sometime.  Why wait until now?  Funny Favre's Packers got off with nothing.  Yet they get all butthurt for someone trying to take out the glory boy.  Funny they implement new playoff OT rules, dubbed the Favre rule, because their golden boy didn't make the SB.  Yes, I think in a star driven league that certain stars get preferential treatment and concessions.  I swear  Goodhell has a fudgepacker crush on Brett at least that would explain all the machinations on his behalf.

Last edited on Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 01:59 am by Road Warrior Yajuta



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 Posted: Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 02:10 am
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PeteF3

 

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Road Warrior Yajuta wrote: http://www.usatoday.com/sports/football/nfl/packers/2007-11-26-nfl-ruling_N.htm

Why did the NFL not throw the book at the Packers?  Where was the discussion of fines, loss of draft picks, and player suspensions for them?  I have zero issue with them trying to stop this, but I have never cared for double standards or inequity when it comes to discipline.  The Packers got not one bit of censure from the NFL.  Under Goodhell's watch.  If they lay the hammer down the Saints need to fight it as there is precedent set by the league and this Commissioner to take no punitive action. 

"ESPN reported that Packers players offered to pay the team's defensive linemen $500 each if they were able to hold Minnesota running back Adrian Peterson to under 100 yards rushing two weeks ago. They offered another $500 for holding Carolina to under 60 yards rushing as a team the next week."

Yeah, that's totally the same fucking thing as what the Saints are doing.

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 Posted: Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 02:13 am
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HBF



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I have little respect for Gregg Williams and this does not surprise me in the least.



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 Posted: Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 02:15 am
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mike3775



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Road Warrior Yajuta wrote: http://www.usatoday.com/sports/football/nfl/packers/2007-11-26-nfl-ruling_N.htm

Why did the NFL not throw the book at the Packers?  Where was the discussion of fines, loss of draft picks, and player suspensions for them?  I have zero issue with them trying to stop this, but I have never cared for double standards or inequity when it comes to discipline.  The Packers got not one bit of censure from the NFL.  Under Goodhell's watch.  If they lay the hammer down the Saints need to fight it as there is precedent set by the league and this Commissioner to take no punitive action. 
That article mentions nothing about bounties being offered for knocking someone out of the game, or getting carted off.

Bounties for holding AP to under 100 yds rushing is nothing compared to offering money to knock players out of the game

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 Posted: Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 02:41 am
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Road Warrior Yajuta



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PeteF3 wrote: Road Warrior Yajuta wrote: http://www.usatoday.com/sports/football/nfl/packers/2007-11-26-nfl-ruling_N.htm

Why did the NFL not throw the book at the Packers?  Where was the discussion of fines, loss of draft picks, and player suspensions for them?  I have zero issue with them trying to stop this, but I have never cared for double standards or inequity when it comes to discipline.  The Packers got not one bit of censure from the NFL.  Under Goodhell's watch.  If they lay the hammer down the Saints need to fight it as there is precedent set by the league and this Commissioner to take no punitive action. 

"ESPN reported that Packers players offered to pay the team's defensive linemen $500 each if they were able to hold Minnesota running back Adrian Peterson to under 100 yards rushing two weeks ago. They offered another $500 for holding Carolina to under 60 yards rushing as a team the next week."

Yeah, that's totally the same fucking thing as what the Saints are doing.
Yeah funny how Petersen got hurt in that same fucking game.  On a blatant low shot at his knees by Al Harris.  No, just a fucking coincidence isn't it?  Seems to be totally the same fucking thing there. 

I never cared for Williams and this does not surprise me, but yeah.  I guess I am just pissed my team got popped for cheating so I am looking for parallels where none exist. 



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 Posted: Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 02:45 am
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Quattro

 

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Sorry this isn't worse than spygate which was cheating. This was incentivizing hard hits and play. There is a difference.

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 Posted: Sat Mar 3rd, 2012 04:00 am
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Benlen



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BayouBoogie wrote:
Benlen wrote:
DaNkinator wrote:
No NFL team whose city hosts the Super Bowl has ever played in that game. 

I may be wrong but I think the 1984 SB with the Niners was scheduled to be at Candlestick Park but there were earthquake concerns and the game was shifted to Stanford 20 minutes away.


Wiki says it was Stanford all along, per a vote in 1982.

yes yes yes...I remember now. The earthquake was in 89 and they switched a game from the Stick to Stanford. LB Jeff Fuller had his career ended when he was paralyzed during the game.



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