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Scott Fujita prepping for his Saints 'bounty' scandal appeal

  • By Wire Reports
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Cleveland Browns linebacker Scott Fujita has been brushing up on his legal knowledge in advance of Friday's appeal to overturn his suspension for his role in the New Orleans Saints' "bounty" program.

"The filing was submitted yesterday, and I was up last night reading legal stuff," Fujita said Saturday.

Fujita said he's focused on football and will let his attorneys handle the details. He doesn't plan on attending the hearing and doesn't believe he'll be asked to speak.

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The Browns open the preseason against the Detroit Lions on the same day of the hearing.

"I'll be with this team in Detroit," Fujita said. "I don't know if there is even going to be testimony. They want me to talk, I'll do that."

The NFL Players Association has sued the NFL on behalf of Fujita and two other suspended players to have their bans overturned, arguing that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell cannot be impartial by handing down suspensions while also hearing the players' appeals.

The NFL says Goodell followed the process agreed upon in the collective bargaining agreement last year.

The NFL suspended Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma for the 2012 season and defensive end Will Smith for four games, along with former Saints players Anthony Hargrove, now with the Green Bay Packers, for eight games and Fujita for three games.

An NFL investigation found the Saints' defense ran a bounty scheme that gave cash bonuses to player for intentionally injuring opponents. The players deny there was any such program.

Saints coach Sean Payton also was suspended for one season, and assistant head coach Joe Vitt received a six-game ban and general manager Mickey Loomis an eight-game ban.

Former Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams, whom the NFL said was the architect of the scheme, was suspended indefinitely.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.



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