NFL Sidelines Four Saints' Players For Bounty Program
As for the investors in the bounty program, I really can't defend them, especially Will Smith and Jonathan Vilma. Those two were the captains and leaders of this defense, and by endorsing a bounty program they were setting a bad example for all of the young players on the Saints. The coordinator may call the plays, but the captains are the leaders and role models for the team; you can disagree with your coordinator, but you better not disagree with your captain. The fact of the matter is that these players weren't put into this system (as Hargrove was), they were the framework of it, and for that they deserve to be punished severely.
I hope that Hargrove wins his appeal, especially considering he got a worse punishment than two of the players who funded the program. I hope Vilma gets his suspension reduced a couple games, because a full season does seem a bit harsh, but I don't see the NFL backing down on the three players who pledged money to the program. I thought there would be more suspensions dished out for players who took hard shots at the allegedly "hunted" quarterbacks (i.e. Bobby McCray), but I guess the NFL wanted to attack this situation at the root - the players who started and funded it.