Saints will be punished for having a bounty on opposing quarterbacks

The Saints had a bounty program, targeting quarterbacks like Brett Favre and Kurt Warner

3/2/12 in NFL   |   Pat   |   5222 respect

Here are the exact tweets from Adam Schefter, breaking the news that the Saints have been caught using a bounty program targeting opposing quarterbacks. Chronologically, as you can see from the time stamps, the tweets actually should be read from bottom to top.



There's really no other details out quite yet, but this has been a popular topic around the league for years. Some players have hinted that such programs exist, but because of safety concerns, the NFL obviously treats it pretty seriously.

What do you think should be the punishment here? Does this warrant draft pick forfeiture?

Part of me thinks that since they were targeting Brett Favre, it shouldn't even be punishable at all. Anything to get him out of the league sooner would have been fine with me. If anything, they should be punished for NOT getting him to retire sooner.

By the way... just to clear something up: The 2009 Super Bowl Champion New Orleans Saints were part of this investigation. So their championship occurred in the same season in which they were found to have been doing something illegal.

That having been said, anyone who says their championship should be stripped is delusional and ignorant, both in epic proportions.

This isn't cheating. The Saints were merely offering a reward/incentive program for players who got after the opposing QB... which is their job in the first place.

Don't call it cheating, because it's not. It's just dangerous to particular players, and those players are the ones whom the NFL has deemed necessary for their league to be as effective and popular as possible.

This isn't something that changed the outcome of games, it's just something that the NFL frowns upon for safety reasons. Don't get it twisted.

One last thing to keep in mind. Gregg Williams is now the DC for the Rams. He might still get fined or suspended, even though he's not with the Saints anymore.
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3/8/12   |   Tigers2010   |   646 respect

Today's NFL should be known  as the pussy football league...

3/7/12   |   TigerSooner   |   125 respect

If you go back in history why would they let (pardon the spelling) Nitshskey of Green Bay fame, Conrad Dobler and all of those guys get away with what they did and now it's time to be crackin down on things?  Pat, there's no proof that our guys have gone after anybody but there's ample proof of the Dirty Birds and others goin after folks.

3/7/12   |   Pat   |   5222 respect

Tigers2010 wrote:
The NFL  been knowing about this for over 40 years and did not not do a thing about it..Until now they want to make the Saints the scapegoats..  

You could say the same about Spygate.

Thing is... they have proof. That's the only thing that matters.

3/7/12   |   Tigers2010   |   646 respect

The NFL  been knowing about this for over 40 years and did not not do a thing about it..Until now they want to make the Saints the scapegoats..  

3/7/12   |   TigerSooner   |   125 respect

I've just remembered hearing a conversation I overheard with some of our guys and I think all will find it interesting. It was said that before we were to play Kurt Warner and Co that he was goin to be retiring. The ones that were talking were saying that the game definitely was goin to miss him because he was much more of a class act than the likes of Farve. From their demeanor there was nothin that would lead you to believe that there was ever any intent of goin after him as you say. And these were guys who were seasoned vets and not the badass types everybody seems to be goin after.

3/6/12   |   Pat   |   5222 respect

TigerSooner wrote:
I'm sorry to inform you but Kurt Warner was never targeted. As for the Drama Queen they could have but I assure you it wasn't as blantant as what they've been accused. Besides who didn't go after the Sr. DQ and the Jr one (Peyton Manning)? I can't see Jonathan Vilma on the line with 2 minutes left in the game worried about some damned bounty when we're losing and there's a shot of winning the game. None of it makes any sense.

Kurt Warner was one of the players named in the original report, who were targeted by the Saints.

Deadspin even posted a video of a Saints player absolutely wrecking him.

It's not conclusive proof, but it's safe to say Warner WAS indeed a target, based on the evidence thus far.

3/6/12   |   WhoDat12   |   2252 respect

Pat wrote:
Well... a big apology already came from Gregg Williams, so I'm pretty sure this story wasn't just something that someone made up.

Just because their defense isn't that good doesn't mean they didn't have bad intentions.

That's the point I made to a friend and fellow Saints fan yesterday. Even with the "bounty program", the defense still finished in the lower third of the NFL. Even in their Super Bowl season they finished 20th. It was an improvement from what they've been finishing, but nobody was mistaking their defense for the '85 Bears.  As far as trying to give the quarterback "remember me" shots, I'm okay with that. That's good football if it's done within the rules. But if they had intent to actually maim & injure then I'm completely against that. But the issue is, it's usually hard to prove intent. I said usually because allegedly there's a paper trail documenting the "bounty system" as well as players from other Gregg Williams coached defenses that confirm the bounty system. If thats the case, then I have no other choice but to say:

3/6/12   |   TigerSooner   |   125 respect

Tigers2010 wrote:
Yes they did...#1 was Kurt Warner and #2 Brett Favre.

I'm sorry to inform you but Kurt Warner was never targeted. As for the Drama Queen they could have but I assure you it wasn't as blantant as what they've been accused. Besides who didn't go after the Sr. DQ and the Jr one (Peyton Manning)? I can't see Jonathan Vilma on the line with 2 minutes left in the game worried about some damned bounty when we're losing and there's a shot of winning the game. None of it makes any sense.

3/6/12   |   Tigers2010   |   646 respect

ms_hippie_queen wrote:
did they actually get anyone on their "list?"

Yes they did...#1 was Kurt Warner and #2 Brett Favre.

3/5/12   |   TigerSooner   |   125 respect

Pat, let me go further and say this. Greg can apologize all day long but still he was told to quit tihis particular behavior not once but twice when others found out and he kept on goin with it like the Energizer Bunny. Now you tell me if his recent apology sounds real. I implore you to explain to me how he can justify this latest apology.

3/5/12   |   Pat   |   5222 respect

TigerSooner wrote:
No I'm not in denial IF any of the guys are guilty they should bedealt with but if it's proven they're not somebody owes them a biggggggg apology. I've followed the Saints from Day 1 of their existance and I can't think of anybody who deserved or deserves to be called a bad ass. Besides I can see it coming from the likes of Ray Lewis, Suh, and others because of their attitudes. Yet I don't see the same attitude in any of the guys from New Orleans. If I'm wrong I'll be the first to let you take a shot at me Big Guy and anybody else can take a shot as well.

Well... a big apology already came from Gregg Williams, so I'm pretty sure this story wasn't just something that someone made up.

Just because their defense isn't that good doesn't mean they didn't have bad intentions.

3/5/12   |   TigerSooner   |   125 respect

No I'm not in denial IF any of the guys are guilty they should bedealt with but if it's proven they're not somebody owes them a biggggggg apology. I've followed the Saints from Day 1 of their existance and I can't think of anybody who deserved or deserves to be called a bad ass. Besides I can see it coming from the likes of Ray Lewis, Suh, and others because of their attitudes. Yet I don't see the same attitude in any of the guys from New Orleans. If I'm wrong I'll be the first to let you take a shot at me Big Guy and anybody else can take a shot as well.

3/5/12   |   Pat   |   5222 respect

TigerSooner wrote:
You'll never be able to convince me that any of the guys who have earned and been given as much respect as the Saints have are guilty of what their accused of. I can give you case after case of bad ass reputations that are admitted to from every team around but still nobody comes from New Orleans. It's just not within the organization. Case in point: who stands to be more vocal about being dirtier Roddy White or Johnathan Vilma. We as Saints' fans know it doesn't take a rocket scientist to know that Roddy White's the bad ass of the 2. Johnathan even, as I write this; along with other team members wants to know who broke the story and is accusing them. Never in the Aints or Saints history have I seen anybody be of the caliber of what's being described. There's former players questioning who broke .......  I'm not predjusticed when it comes to my team and I don't put any on pedastals but if any have fallen prey to Greg Williams all I can say is let chips fall where they will but don't drag the entire team down with you. Baseball suffered from a scandal like this several years ago and attendance and the fans paid for it. We don't want the same thing to happen to football. Whether it happens or not the fans are the ones who'll end up on the losing side.

"You'll never be able to convince me that any of the guys who have earned and been given as much respect as the Saints have are guilty of what their accused of."

So... basically you're a Saints fan and you're in complete denial? Got it.

3/5/12   |   TigerSooner   |   125 respect

You'll never be able to convince me that any of the guys who have earned and been given as much respect as the Saints have are guilty of what their accused of. I can give you case after case of bad ass reputations that are admitted to from every team around but still nobody comes from New Orleans. It's just not within the organization. Case in point: who stands to be more vocal about being dirtier Roddy White or Johnathan Vilma. We as Saints' fans know it doesn't take a rocket scientist to know that Roddy White's the bad ass of the 2. Johnathan even, as I write this; along with other team members wants to know who broke the story and is accusing them. Never in the Aints or Saints history have I seen anybody be of the caliber of what's being described. There's former players questioning who broke .......  I'm not predjusticed when it comes to my team and I don't put any on pedastals but if any have fallen prey to Greg Williams all I can say is let chips fall where they will but don't drag the entire team down with you. Baseball suffered from a scandal like this several years ago and attendance and the fans paid for it. We don't want the same thing to happen to football. Whether it happens or not the fans are the ones who'll end up on the losing side.

3/5/12   |   ms_hippie_queen   |   29927 respect

did they actually get anyone on their "list?"

3/5/12   |   WhoDat12   |   2252 respect

Let me start off by saying that I am completely against any player intentionally trying to injure a player or knock a player out of the game.  Football is a violent enough sport where players have had seasons and even careers ended without even contacting another player. Second, you have to be completely naive to believe that this is the first time that this has ever happened. When I played HS football, we earned helmet stickers for "impact plays", not exactly giving someone a thousand bucks to knock someone out of a game, but its similar in concept.  I recall a game that we were slated to play against the state's leading rusher, and our d-coordinator's instructions were to "hit that motherf***er in the knee". Fortunately for him, he sat out with an ankle injury. I was disgusted by those instructions to attempt to derail his college career before it even started.  As a loyal Saints fan, I'm disgusted that members of this organization participated and facilitated something that is so ridiculous and has NO PLACE in football whatsoever.  Goodell is going to lower the boom and rightfully so because they were warned and still did what the hell they wanted.  I see unprecedented fines, draft picks forefited, AND suspensions for Gregg Williams and Sean Payton, for failure to maintain control of his staff & players. This is even more disheartening than the "negotiating" between the Saints and franchise QB Drew Brees.

3/4/12   |   Tigers2010   |   646 respect

It happen in Tenn also with the Eagles and Redskins happen all teams do it.

3/3/12   |   TigerSooner   |   125 respect

For the life of me I'll never believe that Sean and the guys who've been respected like they have are guilty of what they're accused of. But with Greg Williams nothin surprises me. I didn't like him when he joined the coachin staff and I still don't like his brand of Defense..It's folks like him that give coachin a bad name. I see the likes of Roddy White bein one of his followers but not any of our guys. Now you just know GODell is goin to have a field day with dolein out fines and dishin ut the punishment and whatever he does in his and the rest of the League's eyes it won't be enuff. I'm sick of hearin and readin of what others have already said and damn it this' far from over. I'll be a Saints Fan and a Proud Member of Da Who Dat Nation for eternity and beyond but I can take so much of the ignoramece's remarks. Here's hopin that we find a way to diffuse the biggest bomb and come out stronger.

3/3/12   |   Jess   |   34268 respect

ladyhuckleberry wrote:
I can't believe that Sean and the guys would do this for a second. I can however believe the Drama Queens Peyton Manning and Farve would do it along with Roddy White and a few others but not the Saints. Our guys are too respected to do something like this.
(Edited by Jess)

It's pretty much been proven that the defensive coordinator and at least 22 (up to 27 or 29, not sure) Saints players were involved in this bounty program, and that Williams (the defensive coordinator) was doing this with his players at least as far back as when he was with the Redskins, as even Redskins players have reported. Williams has even admitted his part in it by apologizing. I'm not sure where Peyton Manning or Brett Favre were mentioned as being involved other than being targeted by the defensive players as someone they needed to injure in order to get their "bounty bonus".

*Edit* - if you read the article linked above in this post, you'll see that Sean Payton did indeed have knowledge of what was going on and allowed it to happen, even if he didn't participate:

"An NFL investigation found between 22 and 27 defensive players were involved in the program administered by Williams, with the knowledge of coach Sean Payton."

It bums me out too. Payton is one of my favorite coaches in the league.

3/3/12   |   ladyhuckleberry   |   43 respect

Debi_L wrote:
Okay, I haven`t read anything on this yet, I just got home from work, however, my gut reaction is that the dude, Williams, who was promoting this program, and it sounds like he was pushing it for a few years, especially if it was dating back to when he was with the Redskins, is the one who needs most of the punishment.  The players were doing what they are paid to do, to a certain extent, which is to do whatever they need to do to make sure the offensive team doesn`t score, period.  All defensive players try to sack the QB.  That`s their job, get to him and take him out.  

If, as is suggested, they were being offered money to injure the QB, not just sack him, the man offering the money is the biggest ass***e around.  that`s like soliciting a hitman.

f I am way off the mark on this, I apologize, as I said, I just got home and am reacting with my gut.

I can't believe that Sean and the guys would do this for a second. I can however believe the Drama Queens Peyton Manning and Farve would do it along with Roddy White and a few others but not the Saints. Our guys are too respected to do something like this.

3/3/12   |   Debi_L   |   11701 respect

Okay, I haven`t read anything on this yet, I just got home from work, however, my gut reaction is that the dude, Williams, who was promoting this program, and it sounds like he was pushing it for a few years, especially if it was dating back to when he was with the Redskins, is the one who needs most of the punishment.  The players were doing what they are paid to do, to a certain extent, which is to do whatever they need to do to make sure the offensive team doesn`t score, period.  All defensive players try to sack the QB.  That`s their job, get to him and take him out.  

If, as is suggested, they were being offered money to injure the QB, not just sack him, the man offering the money is the biggest ass***e around.  that`s like soliciting a hitman.

f I am way off the mark on this, I apologize, as I said, I just got home and am reacting with my gut.

3/2/12   |   Scott   |   51810 respect

Jess wrote:
I just read that. If that's the case, then I think Williams takes even more blame for this and quite possibly loses a whole season (if not more).

I wouldn't be surprised one bit if he never coaches in the NFL again.  

3/2/12   |   Jess   |   34268 respect

Dan_B wrote:
Sounds like Williams had the bounty system back in his days with the Redskins too...

I just read that. If that's the case, then I think Williams takes even more blame for this and quite possibly loses a whole season (if not more).

3/2/12   |   Dan_B   |   1067 respect

Sounds like Williams had the bounty system back in his days with the Redskins too...

3/2/12   |   Scott   |   51810 respect

Considering the league found out about this in 2009, told the Saints to stop and they continued it thru 2011, probably means Greg Williams lied at some point to NFL investigators.  That and the fact that Goodell is a hardass who as player safety as his pet issue gives the league all the ammo they need to show the NFLPA that it's not only players who are accountable.  I suspect the Saints lose draft picks and $$$ and the Rams will lose their new defensive coordinator for quite a few games.

3/2/12   |   Cactus_Jack   |   15300 respect

Was there a target on Romo, or were they only worried about teams that might actually make it to the playoffs?

3/2/12   |   marcus_nyce   |   26848 respect

Great. #FML

3/2/12   |   Joe_L   |   12371 respect

Pat wrote:
They're already doing it on Twitter. And it's insanely ignorant. The two situations are so incomparable, it's ridiculous. There is literally nothing similar about them, other than the possible punishment.

Insanely ignorant idiots on Twitter amuse me. By amuse I mean, wonder how they make it through ever day life without being ran over by a bus.

For instance, I see ESPN headline for this Saints story as being, "WeDey Hunt You Long Time!

3/2/12   |   Pat   |   5222 respect

Joe_L wrote:
Someone will compare or put this in the same category as Spy gate in T minus 3,2,1.....

They're already doing it on Twitter. And it's insanely ignorant. The two situations are so incomparable, it's ridiculous. There is literally nothing similar about them, other than the possible punishment.

3/2/12   |   Joe_L   |   12371 respect

Someone will compare or put this in the same category as Spy gate in T minus 3,2,1.....

3/2/12   |   Jess   |   34268 respect

(Edited by Jess)

They should be forced to give their QB to a  QB desperate team instead of putting the franchise tag on him. I know a team he'd be perfect for. cheeky

In all seriousness, this is pretty big, especially considering a coach was involved. Every defensive player involved should be fined, the defensive coordinator should be suspended, and the organization should lose a draft pick. It may not be cheating and it may not have changed the outcome of the game, but these people were TRYING to take opposing players out of the game, and money was involved. Not cool.