September 9, 2012; New Orleans, LA, USA; New Orleans Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma (51) against the Washington Redskins during the second half of a game at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. The Redskins defeated the Saints 40-32. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-US PRESSWIRE

Roger Goodell Re-Issues Bountygate Suspensions

September 9, 2012; New Orleans, LA, USA; New Orleans Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma (51) whose year long suspension was lifted prior to week one stands on the sideline before kickoff of a game against the Washington Redskins at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-US PRESSWIRE

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell has reviewed the evidence in the “Bountygate” scandal and has decided to re-issue suspensions handed down to players as a result as the investigation into the New Orleans Saints pay-for-performance scandal.

The players who were previously suspended — and now re-suspended — are  Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma, Saints defensive end Will Smith, Cleveland Browns linebacker Scott Fujita and free-agent defensive end Anthony Hargrove.

All four players can appeal the suspensions that were handed down by Goodell.

With the re-issuing of the suspensions, some players have seen changes to their previous discipline per ESPN’s Chris Mortensen.

Vilma’s suspension will continue through the remainder of the season but he will be able to collect game checks from the time that he was on the physically unable to performance list.

Hargrove’s suspension was reduced from eight games to seven, while Fujita’s suspension got reduced from three games to one.

Unfortunately for Will Smith, his suspension saw no change and will remain at four games.

This situation could very well find itself back in court if the players appeal and Commissioner Goodell refuses to change the suspensions once again. The players can still say that suspensions for the Bountygate scandal extend beyond Goodell’s jurisdiction.

The courts sided with the players last time and reversed the suspensions so if justice can be served twice, the Saints players could find themselves back on the field by the end of the season.

Tags: Bountygate Jonathan Vilma New Orleans Saints Roger Goodell

  • Chris Smith

    Justice can be served twice??? Load of crap. The suspensions were overturned previously due to the technicality that they needed to be identified properly. This time they are as it is confirmed that all suspensions are for pay-to-injure which closes the loophole that was previously exploited. In actual fact the players rae in worse trouble now because they have to convince the judiciary that the NFL’s evidence is incorrect. That’s a lot tougher than using a technicality to put a stay on the suspensions.From a legal standpoint, the NFL is now in a stronger position than they were before thanks to the clemency shown to Vilma and Hargrove.

  • Chris Smith

    If the players file suit again, they’re just stalling for time. I give them only an 8 to 1 shot at successfully overturning these suspensions and in the case of Hargrove and Fujita they may just decide it’s no longer worth pursuing.

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