My dear sirs and ladies. Gregg Williams of now infamous Bountygate fame has an audio file floating around the web. It’s vulgar, it’s rash, and it sure as hell isn’t safe for work. You can find the audio posted on youtube here.
Unfortunately for the NFL, the bounty programs have come to light and have marred the reputation of a great franchise and led us to discover that they have gone on for years. Kurt Warner wasn’t surprised by the news of the bounty system, Brett Favre hasn’t made a comment about how unusual it all is. It’s just the way football has been played for ages.
And by “just” I mean a terrible way to go about things.
The NFL is a man’s sport. But it’s a sport of respect. The guys who play passionately but respectfully, like Kurt Warner or Ed Reed, tend to get noticed and are, in turn, respected back. But guys who are trying to kill the opposing players. To injure the opposition…well there isn’t a whole lot of respect for people like that.
As much as people think the NFL was harsh on Sean Payton in their one-year suspension for not stopping the bounty scandal, it’s tough not to want to go hard on a guy who allowed a coach to speak about knocking out a concussion prone receiver on the first few hits. It’s tough not to go hard on a coach that knew what was going on, or had some knowledge of it, and still allowed his assistant to speak so vulgarly to the team in the locker room about the other team.
Football is a young person’s game. It’s a game that 24-29 year olds can excel at. It’s a game that brings 21 and 22 year olds in, gives them more money than many jobs will pay, and asks them to perform in front of thousands of fans. That alone is enough of an eye-opener for a kid just out of college. But keep in mind that it molds them. Every one of those kids gets shaped by the NFL.
And when your coach is telling you it’s alright to knock opposing players out and intentionally injure someone…well that’s not something I’d want my kid learning.
Gregg Williams was a cancer on the Saints and a cancer for the NFL. The audio proves it. It’s the signal of everything he did. And it’s just one tape.
It makes me proud that the Jaguars are a high character franchise. When stuff like this surfaces, it’s nice to know that this kind of things won’t be occurring in Jacksonville.
- Luke N. Sims