Sean Payton and Gregg Williams have been suspended—Payton for a year, Williams indefinitely—and the New Orleans Saints' brain trust during the years of their embarrassing bounty system has been eviscerated. Unfortunately, the St. Louis Rams now have to share in that evisceration.
Which is okay. I think it's slightly unfair that the Saints' bounty system has been singled out, because the news that leaked out in the aftermath of the Gregg Williams allegations suggest that this kind of thing is more widespread than anybody wants to admit. But I also think that if it's as widespread as it appears to be, and the Rams hired Williams without doing enough work to uncover it, they've earned their punishment.
It's a tough fine, but it needed to happen—and the more pervasive all this was, the worse it had to be. The Saints, who lose their mastermind, seem to be taking the worst of it anyway; the Rams won't even be replacing Gregg Williams, at least not immediately.
More bountygate coverage from SB Nation St. Louis:
- Jeff Fisher claims the Rams had no idea about the bounty program when they hired Williams. (We're skeptical.)
- The bounty scandal reminds us that the NFL is a rough, dirty game—and we should be sure we want to see how the sausage is made before we go too much farther into the factory.
- However long his suspension from football is, the Rams should fire Gregg Williams.