2013 DRAFT GUIDE
Goodell wants Saints appeals heard this week

By RALPH D. RUSSO - AP Sports Writer
    2012-04-03 15:16

NEW YORK (AP) - NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell says Saints coach Sean Payton and other New Orleans officials suspended for being involved in the team's bounty system could have their appeals heard in the next few days.

``I expect we'll do it before the end of the week,'' Goodell said Tuesday at the unveiling of the league's new Nike-designed uniforms at a film studio in Brooklyn.

Payton, New Orleans general manager Mickey Loomis and assistant coach Joe Vitt were suspended for their roles in the team's bounty program, which offered improper cash bonuses for big hits that either knocked opponents out of games or left them needing help off of the field.

Payton was suspended for the upcoming season. Loomis received an eight-game suspension, and Vitt was suspended for six games. The Saints organization was fined $500,000 and had second-round draft picks this year and next taken away by the league as part of the punishment.

Donald Yee, Payton's agent, released a statement later Tuesday that did not rule out a meeting with the commissioner later in the week but said, ``We've just heard from the league office today for the first time, and at the moment, we are trying to schedule a mutually convenient time for the proceedings to occur, particularly given the upcoming Good Friday, Passover and Easter holidays.''

Payton's suspension originally was to have started on Sunday, but it's been on hold pending his appeal.

After Saints coaches and executives, next to be determined is whether players who were involved in the bounty program will also be disciplined.

Goodell said the NFL met with the players' association representatives on Monday to discuss the league's investigation of the Saints.

``We shared more information with them so they're up to speed,'' he said.

Goodell added that he expected to speak with NFLPA chief DeMaurice Smith again as soon as Wednesday.

``I hope to be able to make some decisions soon,'' Goodell said.

``I believe in getting as much information as possible,'' he said. ``We respect the players. This is important because it's a player safety matter. We think that we need to get some input from them.''

According to the league, Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma offered $10,000 to any New Orleans player who sidelined Minnesota Vikings quarterback Brett Favre during the 2010 NFC championship game. No other players involved have been publicly identified by the NFL.

Saints running back Pierre Thomas, who was modeling his team's new uniform at the NFL's fashion show, called possible player suspensions by the league ``ridiculous.''

``We're players. We're going out there to make plays. That's what the game is about,'' he said. ``You play defense, your job is to tackle.

``They can say they put a bounty out on me when I got knocked out against San Francisco in the playoffs. You can say they put a bounty out on me. Who knows? But they're just targeting us right now,'' he said. ``But I'm not faulting the guy that hit me. It's the nature of the game. That happens.''

Pittsburgh quarterback Ben Roethlisberger said he couldn't speak directly to the Saints situation, but despite all the hits he's taken, he'd be surprised if an opponent was trying to injure him.

``We all respect each other so much,'' he said. ``We all know how hard it is. It really surprised me that guys would want to try to intentionally hurt somebody. This is a fraternity. There's so few of us that do it. The average life expectancy is three years in the NFL or something like that.

``It would shock me if people were trying to intentionally hurt people.''

Thomas said he has not spoken with Vilma or any of his other teammates on defense.

``They probably got a lot on their plate as it is. It's not my business to jump in,'' he said.

Payton has spoken to his old boss, former Super Bowl winning coach Bill Parcells, about possibly taking over the Saints while he is suspended.

Goodell has said he would be fine with Parcells stepping in. Thomas liked the idea, too.

``I mean it would be great. That's somebody coach Payton always talked about in meetings, admired him. He seemed like a great coach. I never played underneath him, but I learned a lot about him. I heard a lot about him. He seems like a great guy,'' Thomas said.

``I know we would love to have him if it happens, but we would prefer Payton to be there with his team, to lead us on the way he's been doing.''

The first organized team activity for the Saints is April 16. Thomas is hoping no matter what happens, the bounty scandal will be settled by then.

``Hopefully, this doesn't keep lingering on,'' he said. ``You don't want this to linger on while we're preparing for a season. You want to make sure everything is focused on one thing: Trying to get to that Super Bowl.''

The Super Bowl, by the way, will be played on the Saints' home field at the Superdome.

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Matt FlynnApr 16 10:01a

Green Bay Packers QB Matt Flynn is expected to compete with QB Scott Tolzien for the backup quarterback job, but head coach Mike McCarthy anticipates keeping three QBs on [ More ]

Rolando McClainApr 16 12:03a

Retired LB Rolando McClain (Ravens) worked out for the Baltimore Ravens Tuesday, April 15, as he attempts a comeback. The workout wasn't a smooth one in terms of conditioning, [ More ]

Chris JohnsonApr 16 12:03a

The New York Jets are sticking to their budget/value system. While they want free-agent RB Chris Johnson (Titans), they will not 'overpay' for him. The depressed running back market [ More ]

Aldon SmithApr 16 12:03a

San Francisco 49ers LB Aldon Smith hasn't only lost the benefit of the doubt with the team, but he probably won't play with the team in 2014, according to [ More ]

Malcom FloydApr 15 11:53p

San Diego Chargers WR Malcom Floyd (neck) continues his rehab from a neck injury, but his status is still uncertain. When the team begins voluntary workouts April 22, Floyd [ More ]

Chris JohnsonApr 15 07:53p

Free-agent RB Chris Johnson's (Titans) visit with the New York Jets reportedly went well Tuesday, April 15, but he left without a deal. Other teams are involved with him, too.

Rolando McClainApr 15 07:53p

The Baltimore Ravens worked out LB Rolando McClain, and it reportedly wasn't a success. McClain didn't finish his conditioning test and didn't perform drills.

Terrell ManningApr 15 05:43p

The Minnesota Vikings claimed LB Terrell Manning off waivers from the San Diego Chargers Tuesday, April 15.

Adam PodleshApr 15 05:13p

The Pittsburgh Steelers signed free-agent P Adam Podlesh (Bears) to an undisclosed one-year deal Tuesday, April 15.

Allen ReisnerApr 15 03:53p

The Minnesota Vikings announced Tuesday, April 15, that they've signed free-agent TE Allen Reisner (Jaguars) to an undisclosed deal.

Daniel KilgoreApr 15 03:23p

San Francisco 49ers OG Daniel Kilgore was found not guilty of public intoxication related to his arrest in January in Tennessee. His case was dismissed following his appearance in [ More ]

Matt FlynnApr 15 02:23p

The Green Bay Packers agreed to terms on an undisclosed deal to re-sign QB Matt Flynn Tuesday, April 15, according to a source.

Dion JordanApr 15 01:53p

Miami Dolphins general manager Dennis Hickey is expecting big things from DE Dion Jordan in his second season this year. He's a very talented player and this is a [ More ]

Brandon LloydApr 15 01:33p

The San Francisco 49ers signed free-agent WR Brandon Lloyd (Patriots) to an undisclosed deal Tuesday, April 15.

Chris JohnsonApr 15 12:23p

The Buffalo Bills have shown some interest in signing free-agent RB Chris Johnson (Titans), according to sources.

Duron HarmonApr 15 10:57a

New England Patriots SS Duron Harmon is the leading candidate to take over as the Patriots' top strong safety now that Steve Gregory has been released.

Eli ManningApr 15 10:23a

Former New York Giants offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride said it's 'ludicrous' to think that Giants QB Eli Manning is in decline. 'There's been no deterioration of his arm strength, [ More ]

Chris JohnsonApr 15 09:33a

The New York Jets are visiting with free-agent RB Chris Johnson (Titans) Tuesday, April 15.

Will MontgomeryApr 14 11:52p

The Denver Broncos' offseason conditioning program begins Monday, April 21. It's not known whether C Will Montgomery or C Manuel Ramirez will start at center.

Sidney RiceApr 14 11:52p

The Carolina Panthers might show an interest in free-agent WR Sidney Rice (Seahawks), but only at the right price.

Manuel RamirezApr 14 11:52p

The Denver Broncos' offseason conditioning program begins Monday, April 21. It remains unclear whether OT Orlando Franklin, OG Ben Garland or C Manuel Ramirez will be the team's left guard.

Terrell ManningApr 14 05:32p

The San Diego Chargers have released LB Terrell Manning.

Nate IrvingApr 14 05:12p

Denver Broncos LB Nate Irving appears to be the leading candidate to start at middle linebacker at this time, but the team is expected to select a middle linebacker during the 2014 NFL Draft.

Leon HallApr 14 04:12p

Cincinnati Bengals CB Leon Hall (Achilles') has been cleared for all football drills as part of his rehab.

Jamarca SanfordApr 14 04:12p

Minnesota Vikings SS Kurt Coleman will likely be a contributor on special teams this year and enter the year competing with SSs Jamarca Sanford and Andrew Sendejo for a backup safety spot.

Dustin KellerApr 14 03:42p

The New England Patriots could show interest in free-agent TE Dustin Keller (Dolphins) at some point this offseason.

Jermichael FinleyApr 14 03:32p

Updating a previous report, the Miami Dolphins have told the agent of free-agent TE Jermichael Finley (neck) that they could be interested in signing Finley if he is cleared [ More ]

Von MillerApr 14 03:32p

Denver Broncos LB Von Miller (knee) said his surgically repaired knee is feeling good and hopes to play better than he did before he suffered his injury. 'I'm a [ More ]

Kurt ColemanApr 14 03:22p

The Minnesota Vikings have agreed to terms with free-agent SS Kurt Coleman (Eagles). Terms of the contract were not disclosed.

Sidney RiceApr 14 02:52p

Free-agent WR Sidney Rice (knee) has been cleared to participate in football activities by Dr. James Andrews, according to a source. The Seattle Seahawks, New York Giants, New Orleans [ More ]

Chris CulliverApr 14 02:22p

San Francisco 49ers CB Chris Culliver has pleaded not guilty to misdemeanor hit-and-run charges and felony possession of brass knuckles. Culliver was arrested March 28 for allegedly hitting a [ More ]

C.J. SpillerApr 14 01:12p

The Philadelphia Eagles tried to land Buffalo Bills RB C.J. Spiller before they traded for RB Darren Sproles this offseason, according to two league sources familiar with the situation. [ More ]

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group