04-09-2012, 11:34 AM
APPEAL RULINGS COULD COME TODAY OR TOMORROW, PLAYER DISCIPLINE THIS WEEK (http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2012/04/09/appeal-rulings-could-come-monday-or-tuesday-player-discipline-this-week/related/)

"The appeal hearings on the penalties imposed against various members of the
Saints organization were held four days ago. A ruling was possible, but not
likely, on Friday. A quick decision, however, would have created the impression
that Commissioner Roger Goodell didn’t seriously consider the arguments
presented by the four entities who made their cases on Thursday.

Regardless, the matter won’t hold for much longer. Peter King of SI.com
reports that a decision on the appeals is <a href="http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2012/writers/peter_king/04/08/mmqb/1.html">coming
Monday or Tuesday, at the latest</a>. King also says he’d be surprised if
Goodell doesn’t impose discipline on the players involved in the bounty scandal
this week.</p>

King also believes (correctly, we believe) that last week’s bombshell audio
from former Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams won’t persuade Goodell
to blame the whole thing on a “rogue coach” and show lenience to Sean Payton,
Mickey Loomis, Joe Vitt, or the Saints organization.</p>

If Williams was talking this way after the NFL put the Saints on notice that
the investigation had been reopened, two years after the Saints successfully
lied to the league about the non-existence of a bounty system, what was Williams
saying in earlier pre-game meetings? What did he say the night before the
Saints played the Cardinals and Kurt Warner in the NFC playoffs in 2009? The
night before the Saints played the Vikings and Brett Favre for the conference
title? The night before Saints played the Colts and <a class="nameLink" href="http://www.rotoworld.com/player/nfl/1493/peyton-manning">Peyton
Manning</a> in Super Bowl XLIV? (Williams, by the way, had explained publicly
before Super Bowl XLIV that his team would be attempting to apply “<a href="http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2010/01/28/gregg-williams-suggests-the-saints-want-to-injure-manning/">remember
me</a>” hits to Manning; Williams used that same term in his pre-game speech
regarding 49ers quarterback Alex Smith.)</p>

Before the now-infamous bounty bowl against Brett Favre, Payton danced toward
the line over which Williams did a cannonball in January. “When you get older
in life, you tend to get very careful, and a little more fearful,” Payton told
the Saints on the eve of the team’s first-ever NFC championship win. “You start
thinking about your own mortality. If it rains outside you might not go to the
store, especially at night. You figure you’ll just wait it out. You might have
somewhere to go and you tell yourself I don’t want to go there. You don’t want
to get in a wreck.</p>

“If you keep hitting [Favre] he’ll make a mistake. If we keep putting
pressure on him he’ll start being careful, he’ll start doing anything he can to
avoid getting hit and he’ll make a mistake. I promise you, <a href="http://www.nola.com/saints/index.ssf/2010/09/sean_paytons_message_on_brett.html">if
we hit him for four quarters, he’ll turn into that old man who’s scared of the

Those words — which caused no concerns when first disclosed by Jeff Duncan of
the New Orleans Times-Picayune — will now trigger feelings of
discomfort, given Williams’ remarks before the Saints’ more recent game against
the 49ers. And given Williams’ remarks from January 2012, it’s not a huge leap
of logic to assume that Payton painted with a broad brush, and that Williams
applied a surgeon’s scalpel to the various and sundry parts of Favre’s body that
had been banged up over the years.</p>

The fact that no one from the organization sounded the alarm after Williams
said what he said about the 49ers means that no one sounded the alarm after any
of his other postseason pre-game speeches, which quite possibly were as bad as,
if not worse than, the things Williams said before what could end up being the
last game he ever works for an NFL team.</p>

Thus, even if Williams was a “rogue coach,” enough other members of the
organization knew or should have known about it, and they failed to do anything
to get him under control. Though it may not make things worse for Payton or
Loomis or Vitt or the Saints organization, it won’t make things any better."</p>

04-09-2012, 11:56 AM
Anybody think Goodell reduces the penalties?