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Saints Put Out Statement About Roger Goodell’s Decision Handed Down

STATEMENT FROM NEW ORLEANS SAINTS
For Immediate Release: March 21, 2012

Today, Commissioner Goodell apprised us of the severe penalties facing our club, as proposed by the NFL.

We recognize our fans’ concerns and we regret the uncertainty this episode has created for them. We are humbled by the support our organization has received from our fans today in the wake of this announcement, and we ask them to continue to stand with us, as they have done in the past, when both our team and our city have overcome greater adversities.

To our fans, the NFL and the rest of our league, we offer our sincere apology and take full responsibility for these serious violations.

It has always been the goal of the New Orleans Saints to create a model franchise and to impact our league in a positive manner.

There is no place for bounties in our league and we reiterate our pledge that this will never happen again.


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One Response to “Saints Put Out Statement About Roger Goodell’s Decision Handed Down”

  1. Hubert Montamat says:

    All the teams have some sort of similar scheme to a degree, I would think, but for the Saints to be singled out and have such an unprecedented ruling handed down is just suspicious and bizarre.

    The NFL seems to have unwarranted power that it is imposing such a penalty not only on individuals, but on an entire team and a city of fans and season ticket holders. This supreme and unquestioned power that the NFL has should not go so far as to affect an entire city, its citizens and its commerce. This is far reaching and the real damage, I think, has yet to be fully realized. If the offenders should be penalized do it in a way that does not affect an entire city and the welfare of the people. How can a sports organization wield such disastrous power, any sports organization? I mean have we gone that far off the deep end that it is acceptable for a sports organization to potentially destroy the lives of so many and to harm the business and commerce of an entire city all in the name of protecting it’s already violent image and the millions of dollars it makes each year in endorsements, TV and the like??

    The NFL is supposed to have rules and guidelines in place for the degree of violence and the actions of the players on the field. Every game is looked at and evaluated and the offenders are penalized appropriately. True, what the Saints did may have been extreme in the context of the basics of the game, but it was done with the sole motive of defeating the opponent and within certain guidelines of constraint. I’m sure none of the players or coaches ever intended to actually cripple, maim or kill an opponent, I would hope not.

    There is so much talk every year about what it takes to be a Superbowl team and every team tries to turn up the action on the field by motivating its players. The “monsters of the gridiron” have been celebrated throughout the history of the game and making the playoffs and winning the whole thing is everything to the coaches and players who are serious and willing to do what it takes.

    All the teams have their way of getting the most out of their players. Within the organization the talk may sound brutal, but it is how the players keep their intensity level at a peak from week to week, afraid of letting up and the opponent getting the best of them. It is kind of a controlled madness, a state of mind that we who are not in that position cannot fully understand. Every week any one of them can be injured or taken out of the game. These modern day gladiators realize that, so they train and use whatever psychological edge they can to have an advantage over their opponent. So what the Saints did has now been discovered, but they are not the first team to implement this Spartacus like strategy by Greg Williams, just the first to get nailed for it this seriously. The Saints are not a bunch of evil, sadistic, cavemen, they are well trained professional football players who want to win, maybe just a little bit more than some others. Is that what they are guilty of? Isn’t that what’s expected of every team?

    There is, I think, plenty of blame to go around for this terrible breach in human decency and goodwill. Wait we’re talking about Football not hopscotch!! It is a violent game in spite of how the neutered NFL chooses to portray it. In the confines of the locker room and team meetings the talk and demeanor is as important as the physical contact that takes place on the field. Every team has their way of dealing with this important element of training and those that are better at it rise to the top and are idolized by the media and all the fanatics; that’s why they are called “fans”. This high talk and bravado is necessary and must be maintained right up to game time. Someone not part of this ritual might think the worst of these men, but they can never understand what these men face week in and week out and what it takes to keep that edge. It is a violent sport; hardly a game, like many would like to believe. It is as much mental as it is physical.

    What the Saints organization did is, I would think, part of a league wide practice. Maybe to a greater degree than some, but we may never know for sure. Much of it has been taken out of context and blown out of proportion so as to make an example for the NFL to put forth a message that is both unrealistic and overreaching. Their mind-boggling actions are in a way so transparent and yet still cryptic in its maniacal nature. The NFL apparently has absolute rule not only over football organizations, but over their host cities and its inhabitants. That may sound crazy I know, but that is exactly what has happened. All this is being done by one man, one sports conglomerate, and one final unchallenged decision. Thousands of lives have been affected by a sports organizations deception. New Orleans may only be the first, we’ll just have to wait and see.

    We just can’t take the time tested rituals of an NFL team and place them in the context of what we think our society should be, it just does not work, and to try to do so is just naïve. What we have here are modern day gladiators, albeit high paid gladiators. What we ask them to do and what we expect them to do is daunting to most of us. They sacrifice their bodies on a weekly basis and psychological motivation plays a big part in their survival. Something the almighty NFL in all its pompous wisdom seems not to understand.

    It does occur to me that we are dealing with money being paid for an alleged bounty and that makes it potentially much more serious. However did the Saints organization go outside of itself to elicit said bounty? Did they accept request, and/or money, from fans and the like and ask anyone from outside of the Saints organization to participate in this dastardly deed? As far as I know this was kept within the organization and I’m sure still managed with an air of level headed caution. These players are not paid assassins!
    As far as I can recall, I don’t think any opponent left the game in a stretcher, in a neck brace or was crippled after a game against the Saints. Bret Favre, well he was questionable already, the Saints didn’t have too much to do with that! Anyway this is not like “Murder Inc.” even thought the NFL would like to make it such. As I said there is much being made of this. Can no one challenge the NFL, just what are they allowed to get away with, and where does it end?

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