Today, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell made a huge statement when he brought the hammer down on the New Orleans Saints for their bounty program. And while this isn’t exactly Vikings news, we felt that the punishment should be mentioned here since we’ve touched on the subject off and on since it came into the news.
No, the Vikings don’t get any compensatory picks. We don’t get a re-do of the NFC Championship game. The Saints didn’t lose their Superbowl ring. The Vikings will be compensated in no way, shape or form (for all you hoping they would be). But they did receive a punishment far more extreme than anything the likes of the NFL has ever seen. Seriously – it’s crazy.
The punishment (according to ESPN):
- Defensive Coordinator Gregg Williams suspended indefinitely from the NFL.
- Head coach Sean Payton suspended (without pay) for one year. Roger Goodell will meet with Payton after the 2012 season to determine the coach’s status.
- General Manager Mickey Loomis suspended for 8 games (without pay).
- Loss of the Saints second round pick in both 2012 and 2013.
- A fine of $500,000.
- Assistant Coach Joe Vitt suspended 6 games (without pay) and fined $100,000.
- The players and coaches involved will be required to participate in efforts by the NFL to educate others on the importance of the respect for the game and those who participate in it. Their safety, sportsman-like conduct, etc…
In regards to the punishment, Goodell said,
“We are all accountable and responsible for player health and safety and the integrity of the game… We will not tolerate conduct or a culture that undermines those priorities. No one is above the game or the rules that govern it. Respect for the game and the people who participate in it will not be compromised… A combination of elements made this matter particularly unusual and egregious… When there is targeting of players for injury and cash rewards over a three-year period, the involvement of the coaching staff, and three years of denials and willful disrespect of the rules, a strong and lasting message must be sent that such conduct is totally unacceptable and has no place in the game.”
It is expected that there will also be punishments for the 22 of 27 players involved eventually.
One thing to keep an eye out for is if this has any effect on what the Vikings do with Remi Ayodele. It seems he’s already been displaced by some of the free-agency moves made so far this off-season. If he is one of the 22 players that will eventually (assumingly) be punished by the NFL, it may be wise for the Vikings to just cut their ties now.
Oh yeah, and since we’re already talking about things that aren’t really Vikings news… Tim Tebow is a Jet. Don’t you just love football?