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Smith, Hargrove visit NFL for talks on bounties
Question of the Day
Fujita requested a video conference but the league rejected that idea. NFL officials wanted face-to-face meetings and plan to reschedule a session with the linebacker.
Fujita did not play in the season opener against Philadelphia because his suspension was only lifted two days before the game, and he wasn’t able to practice on his knee, which he injured during an exhibition game against Detroit.
The players had to meet with Goodell after the suspensions he placed on them were lifted by an appeals panel. Fujita, Smith, Hargrove and Jonathan Vilma were penalized by Goodell for their roles in the New Orleans bounty program, which ran from 2009-11.
The NFL says coaches and players offered cash rewards for big hits during that time frame, though the players deny they were attempting to injure opponents.
The commissioner met Monday with Vilma, still a New Orleans linebacker. He and his attorney were given a sworn statement from former Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams saying the linebacker placed a $10,000 bounty on then-Vikings quarterback Brett Favre.
Ginsberg said they were given an affidavit at the meeting.
“I don’t know what Gregg Williams‘ motives are, but I do know that any suggestion by Williams that Jonathan put up $10,000 as an incentive for his teammates to injure another player is absolutely false.”
AP Sports Writer Tom Withers in Cleveland contributed to this story.
Follow Rick Freeman at https://twitter.com/RWFreeman
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