I don't know about the rest of you, but I HATE the offseason. First the vicodin, then Drew Brees' contract issues, now Bounty-gate. Can we just get back to playing football? Oh well, since we're stuck here in this hellhole of an offseason, I decided to give my opinions on the topics.
Might as well start of with the big one. Everyone and their momma has heard about bounty-gate. The Saints reportedly placed bounties on opposing teams players, where Saints defensive players would receive cash incentives for injuring opposing players. Players have said that they DID receive incentives for good play, such as interceptions, QB sacks, and fumbles, but not for injuring opposing players. This sort of thing has been going on across the league for years. Even the part about injuring opponents.
Now, the problem I have with all of this is, if the Saints were intentionally trying to hurt opposing players, isn't it the job of the officials to put a stop to this? Shouldn't we have been penalized for this? The Saints were the 11th most penalized team in the league last year, behind teams such as Green Bay, New England, and both the Jets and Giants. In 2010, they were the 22nd most penalized, and in 2009 they were tied for 25th. To me, if we were as dirty as everyone is saying, shouldn't we have been penalized more? I think so.
I don't think the defense was lining up every play with the intent to injure someone or knock them out of the game. I can see them saying, hey go hit this guy as hard as you can, but how is that different than normal? You mean you don't always hit the guy as hard as you can? You don't give 100% on the field? CUT THAT CHUMP!!!!
You want proof of someone intentionally trying to hurt someone else? Click here, here, or even here. Can you tell me the last time you saw the Saints do any of that? I didn't think so. Not only that, but if the defensive players were paid incentives for making big plays, where the hell were the big plays?
BREES CONTRACT NEGOTIATIONS
As far as Brees goes, I believe he will get a long-term deal done before next season. Nicks and Colston, well that's another story. Remember when we signed Brees back in 2006? A big part of him coming to New Orleans instead of Miami, is that he felt a little disrespected by Miami, whereas New Orleans was committed to him from the get-go. After 6 years of nothing but love between Brees, the Saints organization, and the city, the first chance we get to re-sign him and we can't get a deal done? The fact that we waited this long is a problem. This should've been done sooner.
I really believe the deal will get done, but by that time, Nicks and Colston might be playing elsewhere. I don't see how we'll have the money to re-sign Nicks, but Colston is still a possibility.
In the end, it doesn't matter that Gregg Williams is no longer with the Saints. It doesn't matter if no one ever collected on a bounty. It doesn't matter if the bounty wasn't to injure opposing players. There was a bounty, and that is against the rules. It doesn't even matter if bounties are rampant across the league. The Saints got caught, and the Saints will be punished (probably severely). The NFL is left with no choice (like they would have chose differently anyway) but to make an example of the Saints. Anything less will result in a media backlash. They also know that this is going on and will use the Saints as an example to try to end this.
As for Brees, fear not New Orleans, he'll get a long-term deal, but you can most likely say goodbye to Carl Nicks.