Saints News

Saints Jonathan Vilma and Will Smith will be present for Gregg Williams testimony


October 21, 2012; Tampa, FL, USA; New Orleans Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma (51) on the watches from the sidelines during the first quarter against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE

In another questionable coincidence, former NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue declined to reschedule the date for Gregg Williams to testify in the appeals hearing for New Orleans Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma and defensive end Will Smith.

Tagliabue, who is serving as an arbitrator, requested that the former Saints defensive coordinator as well as former Saints defensive assistant Mike Cerullo testify at the hearings this Friday.

The only problem was that the Saints are playing the Atlanta Falcons on Thursday night making it extremely difficult for the two players to fly back to New Orleans afterwards and then fly to Washington D.C. to be present at the hearing.

The NFLPA though has stepped in and is going to provide them with what is reported to be a “private plane” so that they will be front and center when the proceedings begin.

In a report by ESPN they said Vilma text messaged them stating:

"“The NFLPA did a tremendous job accommodating Will and I so we can be present for Gregg’s testimony.  Mary Joe (White) and the NFL have based their whole case on two people, so I look forward to hearing his testimony and helping Peter (Ginsberg) during cross-examination.”"

No doubt that supporters of the suspended players as well as suspended head coach Sean Payton would love to be a fly on the wall when the usually brazen defensive coordinator will have a blitz of his own to face during cross-examination of his testimony.