Panel Overturns Bountygate Suspensions
By Eric Lemus
Sep 7, 2012 - 9:23:51 PM
NEW ORLEANS, LA—A three-member appeals panel ruled against the NFL and reinstated four members of the New Orleans Saints that were suspended for their involvement in the bounty scandal Friday afternoon.
Anthony Hargrove, Scott Fujita, Will Smith, and Jonathan Vilma were reinstated by the NFL minutes after the decision.
Jonathan Vilma, MLB.
Hargrove, who was suspended for 8 games, was released by the Green Bay Packers last month. He is now free to talk to any NFL team.
Fujita is now with the Cleveland Browns and will likely play Sunday along with Will Smith for the New Orleans Saints.
Vilma, however, will likely miss time as he recovers from injury. The middle linebacker was suspended for the entire season and banned from using the team's training facilities.
The appeals court decision does not affect the coaches in the Bountygate scandal. Joe Vitt, the Saints interim head coach will miss six games, Sean Payton will miss the season, and Greg Williams is suspended indefinitely. The ruling will also not include Saints general manager Mickey Loomis (eight games).
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