Posted January 22, 2013

Sean Payton reinstated, but Saints fans not letting Roger Goodell off the hook

New Orleans Saints

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell finally reinstated New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton on Tuesday, ending Payton’s suspension after nearly one full year away from his team. Goodell’s decision allows Payton to jump in and help with free agency and draft preparations — in the latter case, likely beginning immediately with the Senior Bowl.

Payton’s return also comes just a few days before the NFL world descends on New Orleans for Super Bowl XLVII. So, with their head coach back in place, Saints fans will be nice and welcoming for Goodell, right?

Sure.

Suffice it to say, Goodell could be in for a cold welcome next week, as he parades around New Orleans on behalf of the NFL. The reception does not figure to get much friendlier during the Super Bowl itself, when Goodell presents the Vince Lombardi Trophy to the winner — plenty of Saints fans figure to nab tickets to the game, even though their team failed to make the playoffs.

49 comments
mackeson71
mackeson71

And this is news???? Payton was supposed to be reinstated about this time.  Why should anyone feel different about godell?  I hope McDonalds won't even serve him in Nola.

SuperDave
SuperDave

Ridiculous. From the beginning of time players have played betting games like this. The reality is EVERYONE in the NFL tries to take out players. Look at the Ravens. Their whole defense is based upon taking out people. Same with the Steelers. But, until someone slips a successful tackler $10 everyone looks the other way. If the action was so bad that ref's were not calling penalties, what does that tell you? It was just football! Nothing more. Saints got screwed.

Chris23
Chris23

Saints fans need to calm down. They are lucky they haven't gone back to the way they were for 40 years before Peyton. Cover up is always worse than the crime folks. People in the city of New Orleans should know this better than anyone

GoPSULions
GoPSULions

By offering any financial incentive for performance beyond what is in a player's contract, regardless if for injury, is against the CBA.  Payton admitted this happened under his watch, even after repeated warnings from the league office.  He got what he deserved.    If it had been Drew Brees targeted by another team. the fans would have been hollering for the same action to protect him. 

koooop
koooop

I watched highlights again of the game. I am as upset as ever. How anyone of conscience can watch those plays against Farve and not fully agree with the Commish is beyond approach. Look at the interception in the 3rd quarter deep in Saints territory, and listen to the announcer reaction. The NFL has FULLY acknowledged that was mistake. Why dont these people who clearly spend to much time on Burbon Street shut up and Thank God their title wasn't taken away.. 

Bustin Chops
Bustin Chops

http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-hassett-saints-bounty-program-20120715,0,1284132.story

If the Saints were so intent on hurting their opponents, why isn't that seen in the numbers?  Maybe Goodell wanted to paint a safety-first picture for the courtrooms with so many ex-player lawsuits pending?  The Saints were a sacrificial lamb plain and simple.  I actually respected Goodell once upon a time.  But anyone that would build so much of their case on the words of a disgruntled former employee is just plain incompetent!

David G
David G

The Saints would not have made the Super Bowl this year anyway.  They do get a better draft position.  And Sean got a huge pay raise, so it worked out well for him.

David32
David32

You clowns are a bunch of idiots!  There was NO BOUNTY SYSTEM!  There has been no evidence to support any such thing.  Payton did not admit to a bounty system - he admitted that "the buck stops here" and that "mistakes were made".....in case you dopes forgot, the pay for performance system that was in place was a violation of league rules.  So - he admitted to having a pay for performance system, and Goodell punished them like they took sledgehammers to opponents.  Maybe one day the posters here will grow up and learn to read and comprehend....nah - that's asking too much.

dennis
dennis

Belicheck was actually caught cheating and not just talking tough before a game. However, he only had to pay a fine. In doing so, Patriots fans weren't punished along with him. For the Saints, Goodell punished thousands of innocent people by suspending Sean Payton. And according to Tagliabue, what the players did wasn't enough to justify suspensions. He would have not suspended the coaches either, except for Greg Williams. So yeah, this is all on Goodell and him trying to distract the safety lawsuits away from the NFL. Shame on him.

LittleBuddy
LittleBuddy

Love the stupid Saints fans. Let's blame everyone else for the fact your coaches encouraged one of the most despicable acts in NFL history. We get it, you guys had a hurricane and think you're entitled to a Super Bowl every year because you built your city below sea level.

destin507
destin507

I agree it is time to move on, but in the interest of truly moving on, I would like our 2nd round draft pic back. We all have been through enough, especially the paying fans. RG, please reinstate the draft pic and let us all move on and learn from this......

Also, we are hosting the Super Bowl. Yes, I am bent out of shape about this past year, but showing our rear ends only embarrasses us as a city, team, and fan base. I believe RG over did it, but we all learned something on both sides.  Let us all draw a line in the sand, step over it and keep walking and not look back. Shat happens, shat happened, now it is time to move on....

Saints Fan. 

Kristian
Kristian

Who cares if NO Saints fans are unhappy aside from other New Orleans Saints fans.  Goodell's not the one that tarnished the name of the Saints, the team did that well enough on their own.

Rickapolis
Rickapolis

New Orleans fans need to stop complaining. Payton admitted to the practice.  He paid the penalty. Let's move on. 

CobyPreimesberger
CobyPreimesberger

again Sean Payton admitted to it, and even when he did get reinstated Payton we will make sure this will never happen again.  Again I knew Payton wouldn't get a slap on the wrist because again they were warned twice to stop it and again, the reason Payton was hit bigger, because like Mike Vick he lied to Goodell before he met him, when he said he knew nothing about the Bountygate scandal

zhartman67
zhartman67

@SuperDave - totally agree, SuperDave. Add the 49ers to the list of teams whose main defensive strategy seems to be to knock the opposing players out. So ironic to me that the infamous Gregg WIlliams audiotape where he talks about "affecting the head" etc., the tape so many use as "proof" of bounties, was before the 2012 playoff game against SF, and yet it was the *49ers* who went out and laid a helmet-to-helmet hit on Pierre Thomas, forcing him to leave the game. And yet... no flag, no fine, not a bit of concern from Goodell or the league there.

GaryBeauchamp
GaryBeauchamp

 @Chris23 This ain't Watergate, no crime involved, no proven physical harm even, so we don't need to calm down.  A number of felons play in the NFL now who have committed crimes, but all is forgiven for them.  Well Goodell acted like the Saints were felons for PR reasons and for the same reasons he allowed Peyton back a little early.  It's all PR.

stagger
stagger

 @GoPSULions Yes and if it had been another team caught (and players and ex-players alike have said it went on everywhere) their fans would be whining just as loudly...

 

GaryBeauchamp
GaryBeauchamp

 @koooop You see worse hits every week my man.  You a Packer fan by any chance?  The refs regularly call roughing the passer penalties now so much it's almost touch football.  Was roughing even called on that hit?

GoPSULions
GoPSULions

 @Bustin Chops Doesn't matter if the incentives were to hurt players or to simply based on good play.  Unless explicitly covered in a player's contract, it is a violation of the salary cap - paying $ under the table, and actually I doubt it was reported as income to the IRS, so tax evasion as well.  This is why it is against the league rules -  as a means to circumvent the salary cap.  And Payton admitted it happened - the payments.  So he is guilty regardless if any injuries occurred.

pljaye
pljaye

Uh, Bustin Chops, I'm not sure if you actually watched the 2010 NFC Championship game, but Favre was the victim of several cheap shots during that contest, including when New Orleans was flagged for an unnecessary roughness penalty after belting Favre following a HANDOFF! Have you ever before (or since) witnessed any NFL team take a cheap shot at an opposing quarterback on a handoff?

 

Moreover, the second-half illegal hit below Favre's knees (which wasn't flagged for a penalty) resulted in Favre severely spraining his ankle and throwing an interception that should have been negated. After having flagged New Orleans for a late hit just moments earlier, the officials probably didn't believe that the Saints would be brazen enough to commit ANOTHER 15-yard penalty on the same drive. However, the incentives associated with a bounty program would explain why New Orleans did just that.

 

At any rate, if the admission of its existence by both Williams and Payton isn't enough evidence for you, the outright and borderline illegal hits on Favre during that NFC Championship game are ample proof that a bounty program existed.

leehwgoc
leehwgoc

 @Bustin Chops If the Saints weren't putting bounties on players, why did Payton and Williams admit to it with detailed affidavits?

 

You need to somehow counter that little hard-fact before you pull out weak, circumstantial data that only skirts the point.

GaryBeauchamp
GaryBeauchamp

 @David G Yeah losing a second round pick is great for the Saints.  Now they will REALLY pick wisely with the ones left.

zhartman67
zhartman67

@David G - and we know this HOW? I agree, the defense looked far from "Super" and even Brees wasn't quite as good as last year, but how much of that can we attribute to Payton being gone all year, Vitt for nearly half the year, them not having a draft pick to improve weaknesses, etc.? If they'd had their top draft picks and full coaching staff, they may have gone 13-3 again and challenged for NFC supremecy or they may have gone 11-5 and been a one and done wild card or they may not have made the playoffs at all. We'll never know, which is why you can't really say they "would not have made the Super Bowl this year anyway."

leehwgoc
leehwgoc

 @David32 Btw, it's cute that you don't seem to understand that 'pay for performance' is a plain as day euphemism for a bounty, when the payment for a 'performance' equates to specifically making big hits on specific players.

 

Maybe one day you'll get real and man up to reality that's inconvenient to your wishes... nah, that's asking too much.

leehwgoc
leehwgoc

 @David32 No evidence except sworn testimony by the coaches, one of whom now basically has an ended career because of it.

 

So a lot of evidence, actually.

JeffWBrown
JeffWBrown

 @David32 So when Williams was taped talking about hurting the opposing players, paying fines himself, etc, then does that count?

 

Did you lead the investigation and come to these conclusions?  I'm sure you did.  Please continue to educate us on your findings.

SuperDave
SuperDave

Way different issues here. With the Pats, you are only trying to predict the future. Spygate may have given the Pats info, but there is and never will be proof that this actually helped them. Its just an unsportsman way to act with no known advantage. In the case of the Saints, evidence was shown that hits were late and certian people targeted, and then there were payments made. Big difference.

GaryBeauchamp
GaryBeauchamp

 @LittleBuddy Yeah Saints fans are "stupid"  unlike all the highly intelligent, gentile, restrained, dignified fans in Oakland, Philadelphia, and the fans in Atlanta who got into a knife fight .

koooop
koooop

 @LittleBuddy Love your comment. LOL so loud, I just had the people in the next Townhouse banging on the wall....... its 6:00 am in Minneapolis

leehwgoc
leehwgoc

 @Kristian Exactly.  It's like some of these Saints fans in these tweets don't actually understand that their favorite team still inarguably did something very wrong, which fully deserved punishment.

 

Perhaps Goodell went a little too far out on a limb with a portion of that punishment (i.e. the player suspensions), but that's really beside the point.

WarrenSFair1
WarrenSFair1

 @Rickapolis If you like goodell then you are not a football fan.  He is ruining the nfl and the game.

leehwgoc
leehwgoc

 @Rickapolis Williams, too.

 

Those two meekly accepted their punishment for a reason, and obviously not because they were innocent.

zhartman67
zhartman67

@Rickapolis - it was still a VERY heavy handed penalty. I don't think anyone thinks no penalty was warranted, but when Tagliabue tossed the player suspensions, that tells you how appropriate he thought THOSE punishments were. Not saying Payton's punishment should have been tossed altogether, but the max he should have served was 1/2 season -- 8 games.

stagger
stagger

 @Rickapolis Right or wrong, he shouldn't expect a very warm welcome to the Big Easy. And I highly doubt any other team's fans would act any differently...

SuperDave
SuperDave

And the Goodell wants a LONGER season, and still have teams play on Thursday after Sunday games, and then pretends to care about player safety.

GoPSULions
GoPSULions

Its up to Goodell to decide how to punish cheaters.  Personally I think he got off lightly.

koooop
koooop

 @GaryBeauchamp I am Minnesota born and raised. I know and admit if the Vikes had played mistake free ball, it would have been over minutes into the 3rd. But the ref is right behind the QB for a reason. That interception in the 3rd had the announcer P.O.'d

zhartman67
zhartman67

@pljaye - I’ve heard Peter King more than once also whine about the hit on Favre on the infamous hand off play and let me just say his bias makes me as sick as yours. WATCH THE PLAY. The handoff is a REVERSE. Favre is a runner going to his right with the ball attempting to fool the defense. The defender is coming head on at Favre and Favre then hands the ball off to a runner going the other way. At that point, the defender is going the same direction as the ball carrier, but the guy who handed the ball off – FAVRE – is between the defender and the ball carrier going the other way. Now Favre didn’t make much of an attempt to actually block, but he was there in the path of the defender, so there’s no way there wasn’t going to be contact if that defender wanted to pursue the ball carrier. HOWEVER… if that defender really wanted to hurt Favre he would have gone all in giving up his body while plowing into Favre and driving him to the ground. Did he do that? NO. Instead he gives Favre a half hit, half PUSH and gets him out of the way so he can pursue the ball carrier, which he then DOES. So… sorry to burst your bubble, but not only is that play not proof of any bounty, it shouldn’t have even been a flag. That play was essentially the same as QB running the option. If a defender commits to the 1st ball carrier and levels him just as or just after he pitches it, that's NEVER a flag, so it shouldn't have been one here. Favre was not a passer in the pocket who got leveled after he passed, he was a runner out of the pocket who got SHOVED after he handed the ball off. Cry me a river... Re, the high-low hit on Favre, you had one defender coming from one side falling as he was engaged with a blocker and as he fell, he lunged to get to Favre the only way he could, so little surprise he came in below the waist and not higher. He was falling down. At the same time a late blitzer from the other side got there and nailed Favre just as/just after he’d delivered the ball. Both individual plays were legal, but together it looked like the classic “high-low” where someone’s trying to injure another player. So ask youself: was these 2 players getting there at the exact same time coming from different places the most perfectly and amazingly timed dual attack in the history of the league, or was it two different guys trying to do their job (get to the QB) who happened to get there at the same time? I’m going with the latter because you can’t time two guys getting to the QB at the exact same time like that! Most teams feel fortunate if they can get ONE guy to the QB on a given play. Bottom line, it was a tough physical game, but none of it is evidence of any intent to injure. Look at the hit on Warner the week before: it was hard, it was violent and probably not totally necessary, but everyone knows when you're a QB in the league and you throw a pick, you better have your head on a swivel if you decide to try to make a tackle, because people WILL seek you out for a good block. Warner was too busy watching the ball carrier to see the hammer coming down and he paid the price. There was no flag though, nor should there have been. Bottom line: the Saints were one of the LEAST penalized teams that year and in case you missed, Paul Tagliabue himself recently said that “it was very difficult to determine whether the pledges (bounties) players made were genuine or simply a motivational ploy, particularly because Saints defenders never demonstrated a pattern of dirty play on the field” So there you have it. This “bounty” scandal is about talk off the field not action on it. Goodell stated that exact thing -- that the players were being penalized for talk and action in the locker room, not on the field -- in presenting his case to the judge that heard it.

David32
David32

 @leehwgoc  @Bustin Chops Bustin Chops, these guys aren't interested in facts.  All they want to do is jump all over the PR show spewed out by the NFL.  Anyone who payed attention to facts would not claim "Payton and Williams admit to it with detailed affidavits", which is simply not true.

 

PSULinos has it party correct - the pay for performance incentives violated the salary cap, and that is what Payton and the others (excluding GW) admitted to.  The problem is that they were caught shoplifting but got convicted and sentenced for armed robbery and kidnapping.

David32
David32

 @leehwgoc Only one coach provided anything remotely resembling "sworn testimony.  Williams provided an affidavit (not sworn testimony in court) claiming things happened.  But, Goodell had him by the balls at that point so we would say or do almost anything to try and get back in the game.

And, while you are correct that "PFP" is a bounty when the intent to injure is premeditated, that is not the case here.  Even the NFL changed their story because they screwed it up.  The original accusations claimed the Saints players specifically targeted oppoents for injury.  Later, Goodell came out and said, "Well, if you get paid for a big hit, and that hit results in an injury, that's a bounty".  He had to completely change their story just to try and fit the lack of evidence.

I've got no problem with reality - it's the NFL's fantasy world that has sucked in so many that bothers me.

David32
David32

 @JeffWBrown Gregg Williams speech was full of something called rhetoric - apparently that is too advanced a concept for you.  Here's three things about GW's speech:

1.  Most football players said it was no big deal - they had heard that kind of thing since high school.

2.  The quote "Kill the head and the body dies" is pretty old - in fact, there was even a photograph of that exact slogan on the wall of the KC Chiefs facility when Herm Edwards as the head coach.

3.  If that speech was so evil and horrible, and the Saints players were so eager to follow GW's "orders", then why did the Saints not commit one single penalty in the game the following day?

 

So - his speech counts as a lot of hot air - standard fare for coaches riling up the troops.  Nothing more.

zhartman67
zhartman67

@SuperDave - not really. Goodell preached about the "integrity of the game" and the Pats violated it more than the Saints imo. The Pats were videotaping opposing teams on their walkthroughs, which no doubt gave them an EXCELLENT idea of what plays they might be featuring that day. YOu don't think that helped them any? Yeah, right. The Saints were accused of offering money for what the defense is supposed to do anyway: make big plays, big hits. And please do show me where there was evidence of "late hits". Quite the contrary, Paul Tagliabue stated that “it was very difficult to determine whether the pledges (bounties) players made were genuine or simply a motivational ploy, particularly because Saints defenders never demonstrated a pattern of dirty play on the field”.

GaryBeauchamp
GaryBeauchamp

 @leehwgoc  @Kristian No my man it IS the point.  Most Saints fans agree a penalty was in order but ditching the coach for a whole year was beyond the pale.  The self righteous attitude of Goodell and fans around the league, given the fact that many teams have felons, killers, drug abusers, steroid users, and the like on their teams is a joke.  I have been watching football for 60 years and the Saints actual conduct on the field was no worse than any other team.  THAT is what counts, what happens on the field.

zhartman67
zhartman67

@leehwgoc @Rickapolis - Williams meekly accepted because he was and still IS under Goodell's thumb. He's banned till Goodell feels like letting him coach again. You think Williams wants to make things DIFFICULT for Goodell or play nice? Duh. Same for Payton: there is no coaches union, but Payton DID appeal his penalty and has said in interviews that he's felt his hand were tied in speaking out about the whole affair because coaches don't have union protection and backing like players do. Again though, for all the Saints haters: I haven't heard one Saints fan say that nothing wrong happened and that there should have been NO penalty, but let the punishment fit the crime. Even experienced league people expected that Payton might get "up to" 8 games and the penalty comes down twice as long as the MAX penalty most people thought it would be? Come on now....

leehwgoc
leehwgoc

 @zhartman67  @Rickapolis 

 

Tagliabue still made it very clear in his statement that Vilma and the others did something wrong.

 

He just decided to end the circus, that's all.

David32
David32

 @pljaye Then why did most NFL players think that speech was no big deal.  I'm not going by my football experience, I'm going by the experiences of those playing in the NFL.

pljaye
pljaye

Instructing his players to target the head of a player who had just recovered from a concussion and go after a player's knees is reckless and goes well beyond the "standard fare for coaches riling up troops." If you can't understand that then I doubt that you have played football at any level.