FOOTBALL — 17 August 2012

On Thursday, the NFL provided a federal judge with evidence that commissioner Roger Goodell did not improperly judge the four players he handed out suspensions to in the New Orleans Saints bounty scandal.

Included in the evidence is a copy of a letter the NFL Players Association sent the league on March 7th asking Goodell to delay the punishment of players affected by the bounty probe.

Also included is a sworn declaration from Roger Goodell stating he was prepared to hand down player discipline at the same time he announced the suspensions for the coaches and executives on March 21, 2012. The declaration states that Goodell held off after verbally agreeing to wait during a phone call conversation with the union head DeMaurice Smith.

The attorneys for Vilma and NFLPA lawyers representing the other three players punished have argued that Roger Goodell showed improper bias with the comments he made before he sent the players notice of their suspensions on May 2nd.

The attorneys have been given until Friday to file their own evidence.

The judge has urged all sides to settle the matter with the help of a federal magistrate.

Jonathan Vilma received the worst punishment of the group, with a suspension lasting the entire season and is also barred from Saints headquarters.

 

 

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