Players in Saints bounty scandal appeal their new suspensions
The New Orleans Saints bounty scandal rolled on as expected today as the four players suspended for their role in the mess have filed appeals with the NFL.
Today was the deadline for the players to take action after Comissioner Roger Goodell re-issued suspensions to the players earlier this week. The twist this time is that linebacker Jonathan Vilma, who was suspended for the entire season, has asked that Goodell recuse himself, according to Albert Breer of NFL Network.
Vilma has been handed the harshest penalty given to players, suspended for the entire season. He is suing Goodell for defamation of character. Saints defensive end Will Smith, Browns linebacker Scott Fujita and free agent defensive lineman Anthony Hargrove have also appealed.
In re-issuing penalties, Goodell did rule that Vilma could collect weekly checks for six weeks on the physically unable to perform list but that would mean he would miss 11 game checks. Hargrove will only have to serve a two-game suspension if he signs with a new team. Fujita’s penalty was reduced from three games to one.
So, the beat goes on and the players continue to carry on as if everything the coaches involved in the matter admitted to was pure fiction.
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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune