New Orleans Saints  

 

NFL-NFLPA meeting on Saints 'bounties' goes two-plus hours

NEW YORK -- NFL and NFL Players Association officials met for just over two hours at league headquarters Monday concerning player punishment in the New Orleans Saints "bounty" case, finishing up at 6:45 p.m. ET.

The union's contingent, a group of lawyers led by NFLPA general counsel Richard Berthelsen, came looking for more specifics on the scope of evidence that players helped run the incentive program. The NFL group comprised of senior vice president for law and labor policy Adolpho Birch, head of security Jeff Miller and director of investigations Joe Hummel. NFL general counsel Jeff Pash also was there for part of the meeting.

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Hummel and Miller ran the investigation for the league over the last three years.

Neither NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell nor NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith was in attendance.

NFLPA spokesman George Atallah told NFL.com's Steve Wyche on Monday that the union hoped to learn more about the evidence that the league gathered in its investigation of the "bounty" program that the Saints ran from 2009 to 2011.

Goodell had said he would wait for recommendations from the NFLPA before announcing disciplinary measures for the 22 to 27 players involved in the scandal. However, the union might not offer such recommendations.

"Our duty is to view and understand the evidence and to ensure it is substantiated and concrete," Smith said in a statement released Monday, before the meeting. "We also have an obligation to ensure that our players have fair due process. It is not our duty to give recommendations for discipline in a vacuum without information or without consultation with our players. It seems as if this entire matter has played out primarily in public, with regard for the fairness of the process an afterthought."

Follow Albert Breer on Twitter @AlbertBreer.

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