The Ginger Hammer Isn’t Fucking Around
March 22, 2012 at 11:12am by Scott • 7 Comments »
In case you spent all yesterday in a sensory-depravation chamber, Roger Goodell laid down the law with the Saints regarding the bounty program instituted by Gregg Williams and tacitly approved of by everyone above him (except, possibly, the owner who instructed for the program to end and was evidently ignored). Everyone is shocked that the punishment was as severe as it was, but I think only because everyone expects the big guys to skate. Not this time.
Gregg Williams: Suspended indefinitely. Goodell will review his status at the end of the season.
Sean Payton: Suspended for the 2012 season, effective April 1.
Mickey Loomis: Suspended for eight games.
Joe Vitt: Suspended for six games.
Saints organization: Forfeit second-round picks in 2012 and 2013, fined $500,000.
And honestly, it could have been worse. It probably should have. But I think it sends across a strong enough message that teams won’t risk this kind of program in the future. So from that perspective, it’s appropriate. And good. Fuck ‘em. This isn’t little, internal wagers among players. “Wanna bet $1,000 I get more tackles than you?” This is a coach-sanctioned pay-for-injury incentive plan. A 53-year old man should know that this is wrong. And then to lie about it for two more years and continue the program even after being investigated? If Williams gets out of this with only a lifetime ban, he should be glad. Depending on how contracts are worded in the NFL, he could probably be sued by anyone who was injured by one of his players.
I’d be lying if I didn’t say I’m glad that the Bucs are getting a competitive advantage out of all this. They were targeted twice a year for three years, so they probably deserve a little extra consideration, along with the Panthers and Falcons. It’s not how I like to win, but justice is justice.