Saints middle linebacker Jonathan Vilma will watch the 2012 NFL season from the comfort of his den after landing on the business end of Commissioner Roger Goodell’s wrath over the “Bountygate” scandal that has engulfed the Saints off-season. The league announced Wednesday that four defensive players — two former Saints and a pair on the current roster including Vilma — will face suspensions without pay for their role in the pay-for-pain bounty system that has already led to the season-long suspension of head coach Sean Payton and multi-game suspensions of General Manager Mickey Loomis and interim head coach Joe Vitt.
Vilma, who reportedly was a ringleader in the bounty program under former defensive coordinator Gregg Williams (who is in an indefinite suspension) suffered the harshest punishment: the entire 2012 season. Defensive end Will Smith was handed a four-game suspension, while former Saints linebacker Scott Fujita, now a Cleveland Brown, will sit out the first three games and Green Bay Packers defensive lineman Anthony Hargrove will miss the first eight games of 2012.
The suspended players have three days to file an appeal, which would be heard by the very person who levied the punishment — Goodell. The commissioner declined to alter the punishment handed down against Payton, who appealed his suspension last month.
According to the NFL press release Wednesday:
“It is the obligation of everyone, including the players on the field, to ensure that rules designed to promote player safety, fair play, and the integrity of the game are adhered to and effectively and consistently enforced,” Commissioner Goodell said. “Respect for the men that play the game starts with the way players conduct themselves with each other on the field.”
The evidence conclusively demonstrated that from 2009-2011 Saints players of their own accord pledged significant amounts of their own money toward bounties, that players accepted payments for “cart-offs” and “knockouts” of injured opposing players, and that the payout amounts doubled and tripled for playoff games.
To post a comment, please log into your IND account. If you do not have an account, click the "register" button to create one. Facebook comments can be used as an alternative to creating an account at theIND.com.
JUL 24 This post on the Red Stick Blog reveals nine facts about Mike the Tiger, the LSU mascot who turns nine this week. That's interesting and all, but the best part of the post is the video of Mike playing around with a visitor, just like any other kitty. A massive, deadly, 400-pound, roaring kitty.
JUL 24 DIG Baton Rouge tells us about a local chef who makes an appearance on one of the Food Network's inexplicably stupid competition shows, Cutthroat Kitchen. The chef, who also appeared on Master Chef, talks here about Cajun and Creole cuisine and its place in American food.
JUL 24 Political consultants who switched candidates in midstream to work with Jindal buddy Garret Graves on his Congressional campaign are being sued by their former employer, the Picayune tells us in this post. Among the allegations? The firm started working for Graves before they left his opponent's campaign.
JUL 24 The recent articles about a study that found America's happiest cities are here in Louisiana have produced some raised eyebrows among those who have actually been to Shreveport and Baton Rouge. But the Today show did some research, and produced this article which talks about stuff that doesn't really represent those two cities. Are we still going with the drunk, fat and stupid brand?
JUL 24 Here's a story on Huffington Post that explores the connection between Gov. Bobby Jindal and the charter school business that sued him Tuesday over Common Core. The head of that business is recalling all the good stuff Bobby had to say about the curriculum - you know, back when it was cool to like it.
JUL 24 Blogger CB Forgotston has found another problem with the 11th hour bill that tacked $30K onto State Police Commander Mike Edmonson's annual retirement check. The move was missing a financial assessment that's required by statute. This is a red flag that was missed, CB says. You think?
JUL 24 Blogger Mike Deshotels prints a statement from three BESE members who are supporting the legislators who are suing the governor over the Common Core mess. He adds his own personal comment, as well.
JUL 24 The Lens is hosting a panel discussion on the cost of coastal restoration, and who should pay for it, next month in NOLA. It is planned to be a discussion of the realities of the coastal restoration master plan and its current funding, as well as what the future holds.
Read the Flipping Paper!
Click Here for the Entire Print Version of IND Monthly