Sean Payton dodges Deflategate, Bountygate talk


The so-called Deflategate scandal embroiling the New England Patriots has often been compared and contrasted with the New Orleans Saints' similarly suffixed Bountygate situation from 2012.

Saints coach Sean Payton, who was suspended for the entire 2012 season, declined to comment when asked about the penalty the NFL levied on the Patriots -- including a $1 million fine, forfeiting two draft picks and a four-game suspension for Tom Brady.

"I knew that question was coming at some point," Payton said Saturday at the team's rookie minicamp, via The Times-Picayune. "We went through a process three years ago and I'm sure (the Patriots) are going through one right now. But other than that our focus right now for me and our team is on what we are doing right now. We've got enough problems ourselves to solve. That's what I'd say."

In addition to Payton's suspension in 2012, the Saints were fined $500,000, docked a second-round draft pick in 2012, general manager Mickey Loomis was suspended for eight games, assistant head coach Joe Vitt for six games and defensive coordinator Gregg Williams were suspended indefinitely.

Four Saints players were also suspended, but eventually had those rulings overturned.

Patriots coach Bill Belichick was not found culpable by the Ted Wells report, nor was he individually penalized. While many might wonder how Payton feels about the dichotomy, the coach didn't take the chance to critique or compare his pervious penalty with Belichick's situation -- there was nothing to be gained by the Saints with such an open-book response.

The latest Around The NFL Podcast welcomes Lindsay Rhodes to discuss the Patriots' response in the "Deflategate" saga and the latest names revealed on the "The Top 100 Players of 2015" countdown. Find more Around The NFL content on NFL NOW.