Two current, and two former, New Orleans Saints player’s are in New York to meet with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell as they attempt to appeal varying suspensions for their alleged involvement in Gregg Williams “pay-for-performance” system.
Jonathan Vilma and Will Smith comprise the current Saints players facing suspension — Smith was suspended four games while Vilma the entire season.
Former Saints linebacker Scott Fujita, now with the Browns, and former defensive tackle Anthony Hargrove, now with the Packers, comprise the players no longer with the team.
Fujita is facing a four game suspension, while Hargrove will be forced to sit out eight games.
The appeals process was suppose to get underway this morning, but the NFL requested an adjournment for later this afternoon.
While Smith, Hargrove, and Fujita will wait patiently for their time with Goodell, Vilma declined after he and his attorney said they have yet to receive any proof of Vilma’s involvement.
Vilma and his camp have asked for the NFL’s evidence against him from the start, and they maintain that little to no “legitimate” proof has been provided as of yet.
The NFL claims to have direct knowledge that Vilma was the leader of Williams system, and not only was he instrumental in it’s foundation, but also offered up large sums of money to injure opposing quarterbacks.
Vilma adamantly denies the allegations, and has even brought a lawsuit against Roger Goodell for defamation of character. It’s clear that Vilma is no fan of Goodell’s
Well, you’re basing that on the fact it would be a fair process, he said when asked about his decision to not speak. And I don’t know how you’d get a fair process when you have a judge, jury and executioner. He’s made a ruling, he’s obviously going to stick by that ruling. And it’s hard to go into that process assuming it’s going to be fair. You have to assume that it’s not. — Jonathan Vilma