Wednesday, Saints Quarterback Drew Brees lashed out at NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and the league saying they were more concerned about the outcome of the bounty investigation than making sure it was a fair process.
“Right now the league officer and commissioner Goodell have no credibility with us or with the fans,” Brees said during a news conference at Saints headquarters in Metairie.
“Our coaches and players were lied to by the league office, by the investigators, to where they were getting their information. They made it seem like they had this rock solid case made up of coaches and players when in reality they have the testimony of Gregg Williams and Mike Cerullo, two disgruntled employees that were fired here because they didn’t fit the mold of what we were about. And clinically the jury is still out on where these guys are mentally,” Brees said.
Defensive end Will Smith originally received a four game suspension for his alleged role in the bounty program. But Smith said in testimony in late November before former NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue that neither Williams nor Cerullo fingered him.
“When Gregg was interviewed he said he didn’t say that about me, that me in particular, everything they said about me, I didn’t do. He said that in his testimony,” Smith said Wednesday.
Tagiabue’s findings cleared former Saint Scott Fujita. But former Saint Anthony Hargrove, Vilma, and Smith were still at fault according to Tagiabue.
Vilma said Wednesday that he’s not surprised given he still has a defamation lawsuit against Goodell.
“It didn’t bother me because his law firm is representing Goodell in the defamation suit. It wouldn’t like if he exonrated me and said this all bs, and turn around and move forward with my defamation case. It was one of those deals where he is stuck between a rock and hard place. He knew this was a botched investigaton, but he has to protect his client,” Vilma said.