Monday, 23 April 2012 15:55

New Orleans Saints Ponder Draft As NFL Thinks Bountygate Sanctions

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vilmaNFL general counsel Jeff Pash on the Saints' player bounty penalties via Larry Holder, "We are moving toward making decisions on player discipline. I do think there will be player discipline that is based on facts. We are moving toward that. It is important because it reinforces that there is shared responsibility here. Players were clearly participants and clearly have a share of that responsibility and accountability as well."

In a court of law, the NFL would have difficulty convicting many players even though Gregg Williams told them to. The 49ers didn't get a player put out of the game with the Saints. The Saints weren't penalized for dirty play.

Why would a player making $3 million a year risk getting a $10,000 fine for putting an opposing player out of a game for $2,000?

Holder today wrote "The Saints signed four defensive free agents -- DT Broderick Bunkley and LBs Curtis LoftonDavid Hawthorne and Chris Chamberlain -- this offseason that will likely see significant playing time in 2012. And the Saints will likely fill more defensive holes via free agency, according to a league source. So the Saints probably won't look for many draft picks to play right away.”

It is not only New Orleans Saints football team and its fans who are wondering when the NFL will announce its punishment of the Saints.

Gary Myers of The NY Daily News wrote, “Linebacker Jonathan Vilma, the ex-Jet, could face the roughest discipline from Goodell. It’s been said he offered $10,000 to any teammate knocking Brett Favre out of the 2009 NFC Championship Game.

Defensive end Will Smith, the Saints’ best pass rusher, and starting strong safety Roman Harper have reportedly also been a focal point of the investigation. Vilma is the Saints’ defensive captain and starting middle linebacker.

If Goodell doesn’t announce his ruling by the time the draft starts Thursday night at 8 p.m., then obviously he’s not going to announce it during the draft. If he does announce prior to the draft that he is wiping out the Saints defense for part of the season, then New Orleans surely will load up on that side of the ball with the picks it has in rounds three through seven. If Goodell doesn’t announce the suspensions until after the draft, then the Saints would be smart to anticipate Goodell is going to hurt them and sit some of the defensive players and draft their replacements.

Mike Detillier, has issued his “Top Ten” NFL draft picks and many of the names are not at all unexpected:

On Thursday, the top college football players enter the NFL and here is how I see the first round of the 2012 NFL draft.

1. Indianapolis Colts, Andrew Luck, quarterback, Stanford

2. Washington Redskins (from St. Louis), Robert Griffin III, quarterback, Baylor

3. Minnesota Vikings, Matt Kalil, offensive tackle, USC

4. Cleveland Browns, Trent Richardson, running back, Alabama

5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Morris Claiborne, cornerback, LSU

6. St. Louis Rams (from Washington), Justin Blackmon, wide reciever, Oklahoma State

7. Jacksonville Jaguars, Quinton Coples defensive end, North Carolina

8. Miami Dolphins, Ryan Tannehill, quarterback, Texas A&M

9. Carolina Panthers, Fletcher Cox, defensive tackle, Mississippi State

10. Buffalo Bills, Michael Floyd, wide receiver, Notre Dame


The proposed Tulane football stadium will be located between the Reilly Center and the baseball stadium, near where old Tulane Stadium was until it was taken down in 1985.

Game-day parking and traffic will be familiar foes for many neighbors. Residents on Audubon Blvd. are jeering the stadium and are signing an online petition "Save Our Neighborhoods."

My office during the seasonal assignments (fund-raising) was in the Wilson Center, between the stadium and the baseball stadium.

The on-campus stadium will seat 30,000.

He may be 10th in the NBA in double-doubles, but the only number that seems to follow him around is 72 --  the number of days he was married to Kim Kardashian.

Time's 100 most influential people in sports include Tim Tebow, Drew Brees and sports columnist Ed Staton. OK, I made up that last one.

Jets CB Antonio Cromartio, 27, just had his 10th child with eight different women. I doubt if Brees would approve.

At 49, the Rockies' Jamie Moyer became the oldest pitcher ever to win a game. He's so old he remembers when roids meant hemorrhoids.

Parting thoughts: "If you don't like my driving, stay off the sidewalks," and "I used to respect my elders. Now I have none to respect."

Ole Miss Manning Way, named for Ole Miss quarterback Archie Manning, has previously had a speed limit of 18 mph in honor of his collegiate number.

No more.

The school changed that speed limit to a more common 10 mph in honor of now two-time Super Bowl winner Eli, the number he wore while playing at Ole Miss.

by Ed Staton and Bayoubuzz Staff

(Visit Louisiana Sports for a sale ending soon on Saints, LSU merchandise)


Is Goodell being fair to the New Orleans Saints in this bountygate matter?

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Ed Staton

Ed Staton is a former sports writer for the Times Picayune and New Orleans States Item.  He also served as the New Orleans Saints Information Director.  He has won 43 media awards in writing, design and photography. | This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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