4 players file appeals in bounty case | NFL
All four players punished in the New Orleans bounty investigation have filed appeals with the league. Sources familiar with the situation say the players have asked commissioner Roger Goodell to remove himself as arbitrator because they do not believe he can be impartial.
NEW ORLEANS — All four players punished in the bounty investigation have filed appeals with the league.
Sources familiar with the situation say the players have asked commissioner Roger Goodell to remove himself as arbitrator because they do not believe he can be impartial.
One of the sources also said New Orleans linebacker Jonathan Vilma expects to play at Tampa Bay on Oct. 21 while his appeal of a seasonlong suspension is pending.
League spokesman Greg Aiello confirmed the players had filed appeals, but said the league would decline to comment on the substance of those documents.
On Tuesday, Goodell upheld his initial suspensions of Vilma and Saints defensive end Will Smith (four games), and reduced his suspensions for ex-Saints Anthony Hargrove (from eight to seven games) and Scott Fujita (from three games to one).
Defensive lineman Hargrove is a free agent, and Fujita is a Cleveland linebacker.
Griffin seems ready
Rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III took part in Washington's full practice for the first time this week and appears set to play Sunday against the Minnesota Vikings. He is recovering from a concussion suffered in Sunday's 24-17 loss to Atlanta.
• San Francisco coach Jim Harbaugh criticized comments made by offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride of the New York Giants, who visit the 49ers on Sunday.
Gilbride said All-Pro defensive end Justin Smith of the 49ers grabs offensive linemen and added, "He never gets called for it, so he gets away with murder."
Harbaugh said, "It's obvious that the Giants coaching staff's sole purpose is to use their high visibility to both criticize and influence officiating."
• Anthony Wayne Smith, a defensive end for the Los Angeles and Oakland Raiders from 1991 to 1997, has been ordered to stand trial for four murders from 1999 to 2008 that have been combined into one case.
Defense attorney Daniel Evans said there is no physical evidence tying Smith, 45, to any of the killings.