Former New Orleans Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams probably never dreamed that he would have to face two of his former players off the field when he gave his testimony in the bounty appeals case.
Yet here we are and Williams is currently in New York City being cross-examined by Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma’s attorney Peter Ginsberg. And let’s not forget that Vilma as well as defensive end Will Smith are on hand as well at the hearing.
Vilma and Smith were flown in a private charter jet provided by the NFLPA following their game against the Atlanta Falcons. That also won’t help the mood since the Saints were handed a 23-13 loss and saw their playoff window close even more.
Along with Williams, former defensive assistant Mike Cerullo was on hand to testify yesterday which the two players obviously couldn’t attend. But the sense was that the Williams testimony was the one both players wanted to be at, mainly Vilma.
One big reason for Vilma wanting to be there was the fact that Williams fingered him as putting up a $10,000 bounty on quarterback Brett Farve during the 2010 NFC Championship game, an accusation that Vilma denies.
Ultimately arbitrator Paul Tagliabue will have to make the call as to the credibility of Williams’ and Cerullo’s testimony which up to this point has been shaky at best especially with Cerullo’s handwritten notes that included no chain of custody by investigators.