If you're a New Orleans Saints fan, and many of us are, you're probably shocked and saddened by the news the Saints conducted a bounty program for the past few years, paying defensive players extra money if they knocked opposing players out of a game.
One of the targets was favorite son Brett Favre, when he was playing for Minnesota. This revelation is both disturbing and disgusting. Pro football is violent enough, without the added incentive of paying extra to inflict pain and injury.
Gregg Williams was the defensive coordinator for the Saints while the program was underway. He now works for St. Louis in the same capacity. Williams has apologized for his conduct. That's not enough. The NFL should punish him harshly.
Coach Sean Payton knew about the program, but did nothing to stop it, as did general manager Mickey Loomis. Both should be punished as well.
The league needs to send a clear signal that such conduct will not be tolerated by any team, ever. To issue a slap on the wrist to the team would do a great disservice to all NFL players who put their health on the line every time they suit up for a game.
Too many players are badly hurt playing the game under normal circumstances, let alone being knocked out of a contest, and possibly a career, for a few extra bucks.
That's our opinion, we would like to hear yours. Email your thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org, or post your comments below.
WLOX-TV General Manager