Late Sunday evening an ironic thing happened after the New Orleans Saints defeated the Arizona Cardinals 17-10 in the Hall of Fame Game. A report surfaced by ESPN that Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma could possibly have his suspension reduced by half by the NFL.
The report stated that if Vilma were to agree to drop his civil defamation suit against NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, then they would consider cutting his suspension in half.
The NFL would still get a nine game suspension out of Vilma if this scenario was true, since placed within the first eight games was actually a bye week that the linebacker would have to be suspended for as well.
Responding quickly the league issued a statement saying that the reports were untrue. Speculation began that the NFL never intended for the deal to be made public and were quickly covering their tracks.
Early this morning ESPN’s Adam Schefter issued a report saying that there is no settlement or deal expected between the two parties “before the judge rules on the temporary restraining order as early as Friday”.
Even if there were a deal offered to Vilma publicly or privately, the popular opinion was that he would turn it down and take his chances in clearing his name with the courts.