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Old 03-02-2012, 04:30 PM   #1
beer
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Default saints had a "bounty" fund

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Between 22 and 27 defensive players on the New Orleans Saints, as well as defensive coordinator Gregg Williams, maintained a "bounty" program funded primarily by players in violation of NFL rules during the 2009, 2010 and 2011 seasons, the NFL announced Friday.

The investigation by the league's security department determined that an improper "pay for performance" program included "bounty" payments to players for inflicting injuries on opposing players that would result in them being removed from a game.

In some cases, the amounts pledged were both significant and directed against a specific opposing player, according to the league's investigation.

Saints general manager Mickey Loomis failed to stop the bounty program when directed to do so by Saints owner Tom Benson, while coach Sean Payton was aware of the allegations but did not pursue them or take steps to stop the "bounty" program, according to the investigation's findings.

The findings, corroborated by multiple independent sources, have been presented to commissioner Roger Goodell, who will determine the appropriate discipline.

"It is our responsibility to protect player safety and the integrity of our game, and this type of conduct will not be tolerated," Goodell said in a statement.

"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."

Goodell has advised the Saints that he will hold proceedings to determine potential discipline against the team and the individuals involved, and confer with the players' union regarding the appropriate punishment. That discipline could include fines, suspensions and the forfeiture of draft choices.

"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," Benson said in a statement. "While the findings may be troubling, we look forward to putting this behind us and winning more championships in the future for our fans."

Williams did not immediately return calls from ESPN seeking comment.

According to the investigation, the players regularly contributed cash into a pool and received improper cash payments of two kinds from the pool, based on their play in the previous week's game.

Williams administered the program with the knowledge of other defensive coaches and occasionally contributed funds, according to the league investigation.

Payments were made for plays such as interceptions and fumble recoveries. But the program also included "bounty" payments for "cart-offs," meaning that the opposing player was carried off the field, and "knockouts," meaning that the opposing player was not able to return.

The investigation showed that the total amount of funds in the pool may have reached $50,000 or more at its height during the 2009 playoffs. The program paid players $1,500 for a "knockout" and $1,000 for a "cart-off," with payouts doubling or tripling during the playoffs.

"The payments here are particularly troubling because they involved not just payments for 'performance,' but also for injuring opposing players," Goodell said in a statement. "The bounty rule promotes two key elements of NFL football: player safety and competitive integrity."

The NFL has a longstanding rule prohibiting "non-contract bonuses," and they violate both the league constitution and bylaws and the Collective Bargaining Agreement with the players' union.

Clubs are advised every year of this rule in a memo from the commissioner. Citing Sections 9.1(C)(8), and 9.3(F) and (G) of the Constitution and By-Laws, the memo for the 2011 season stated:

"No bonus or award may directly or indirectly be offered, promised, announced, or paid to a player for his or his team's performance against a particular team or opposing player or a particular group thereof. No bonuses or awards may be offered or paid for on field misconduct (for example, personal fouls to or injuries inflicted on opposing players)."

"Our investigation began in early 2010 when allegations were first made that Saints players had targeted opposing players, including Kurt Warner of the Cardinals and Brett Favre of the Vikings," Goodell said in a statement. "Our security department interviewed numerous players and other individuals.

"At the time, those interviewed denied that any such program existed and the player that made the allegation retracted his earlier assertions. As a result, the allegations could not be proven," Goodell said.

"We recently received significant and credible new information and the investigation was re-opened during the latter part of the 2011 season."

According to the NFL investigation, Benson was not initially aware of the bounty program and directed Loomis to make sure it was discontinued immediately. The evidence showed Loomis did not do so, investigators found.

"Similarly, when the initial allegations were discussed with Mr. Loomis in 2010, he denied any knowledge of a bounty program and pledged that he would ensure that no such program was in place. There is no evidence that Mr. Loomis took any effective action to stop these practices," according to the league's findings.

Payton "was not a direct participant in the funding or administration of the program," according to the investigation.

However, Payton "was aware of the allegations, did not make any detailed inquiry or otherwise seek to learn the facts, and failed to stop the bounty program. He never instructed his assistant coaches or players that a bounty program was improper and could not continue," the investigation found.

The investigation included the review of approximately 18,000 documents totaling more than 50,000 pages, interviews of a wide range of individuals and the use of outside forensic experts to verify the authenticity of key documents.

http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/id/76...ogram-nfl-says
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Old 03-02-2012, 06:05 PM   #2
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Default Re: saints had a "bounty" fund

Wow.

No wonder why they missed so many tackles
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Old 03-02-2012, 06:25 PM   #3
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Default Re: saints had a "bounty" fund

You would think if there was an illegal bounty fund that there wouldn't be so much documentation for it
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Old 03-02-2012, 06:58 PM   #4
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Default Re: saints had a "bounty" fund

How much was this hit worth?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9CC1mpi7hIM
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Old 03-02-2012, 07:38 PM   #5
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Default Re: saints had a "bounty" fund

So what is going to be the fine?

Are they going to be stripped of a first round pick and other picks? Have the coaches involved fired? Massive fine?

If the spygate incident costed the Pats a first rounder I'm sure this will get doubled.
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Old 03-03-2012, 12:36 AM   #6
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Default Re: saints had a "bounty" fund

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sarcastic
How much was this hit worth?

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

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aJG7WtIn8f8

Imagine how much money they made during that game
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Old 03-03-2012, 01:26 AM   #7
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Default Re: saints had a "bounty" fund

Honestly don't see the big deal in this.


Getting paid a little extra to get the job done. Sure, maybe the safety regulations were in jeopardy but besides that I see no harm in what they were doing.
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Old 03-03-2012, 08:36 AM   #8
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Default Re: saints had a "bounty" fund

Quote:
Originally Posted by ballinhun8
Honestly don't see the big deal in this.


Getting paid a little extra to get the job done. Sure, maybe the safety regulations were in jeopardy but besides that I see no harm in what they were doing.
It's a huge deal. NFL has a huge problem with injuries already without incentives for doling them out. We now have to wonder about every tackle where a Saint hit a guy in the knees or went head-to-head. You know it's bad when Goodell and the NFLPA will be unified against the players and coaches responsible. They have to be punished, and the punishment needs to be severe.
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Old 03-03-2012, 08:49 AM   #9
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Default Re: saints had a "bounty" fund

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Originally Posted by Real Men Wear Green
It's a huge deal. NFL has a huge problem with injuries already without incentives for doling them out. We now have to wonder about every tackle where a Saint hit a guy in the knees or went head-to-head. You know it's bad when Goodell and the NFLPA will be unified against the players and coaches responsible. They have to be punished, and the punishment needs to be severe.
This.
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Old 03-03-2012, 09:56 AM   #10
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Default Re: saints had a "bounty" fund

Greg Williams was the Skins DC when Phillip Daniels and Andre Carter tried to rip Peyton's head off back on 06. The reports are that's when he initially got hurt, you can even see him reaching for his right shoulder and sort of shaking his arm like there was numbness or stinging in it. It was a blatantly dirty hit, especially by Daniels going high on him after Carter was already dragging him down.
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Old 03-03-2012, 10:06 AM   #11
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Default Re: saints had a "bounty" fund

Guess they didn't have a bounty out on Marshawn Lynch.
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Old 03-03-2012, 11:02 AM   #12
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Default Re: saints had a "bounty" fund

Quote:
Originally Posted by InspiredLebowski
Greg Williams was the Skins DC when Phillip Daniels and Andre Carter tried to rip Peyton's head off back on 06. The reports are that's when he initially got hurt, you can even see him reaching for his right shoulder and sort of shaking his arm like there was numbness or stinging in it. It was a blatantly dirty hit, especially by Daniels going high on him after Carter was already dragging him down.
He should be banned from football, not just the NFL.
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Old 03-03-2012, 12:53 PM   #13
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Default Re: saints had a "bounty" fund

Not a big deal to me. How can you look at a saints player hit sideways but not someone else like T Suggs or P willis??? Difference is saints got caught but reality is we don't know the intent on any player hitting another. Could be to hurt, knock them out, make them see flying birdies. That's football. We like big hits. Does anyone recall dirty hits from saints? I know as a team they stunk at tackling. As did my eagles lol
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Old 03-03-2012, 12:56 PM   #14
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Default Re: saints had a "bounty" fund

Saints being caught is a huge difference. Favre's recent comments do bring into question how wide-spread this is but there's always a difference between known guilt and mere speculation. NFL needs to send a message.
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Old 03-03-2012, 01:05 PM   #15
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Default Re: saints had a "bounty" fund

This is such horrible timing especially with Drew and Nicks not signed. Why did it have to be us getting caught.

Probably going to cost us picks and a GM (who is more of a money guy than talent evaluator). Hopefully nothing happens to coach Payton long term but god knows. Especially with all the fines these days. This shit is rough.
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