La. Legislature asks NFL to reconsider Saints' 'bounty' penalties

The Louisiana Legislature is asking the NFL to reconsider the penalties imposed on the New Orleans Saints for their three-year participation in a "bounty" program, in which coaches rewarded players for knocking out opponents or forcing them to be carted off the field.

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The formal request received final legislative passage with a 28-1 Senate vote Monday.

In the resolution, lawmakers say there is "widespread public opinion throughout the state of Louisiana and beyond that the penalties imposed upon the Saints are too harsh and should be reconsidered."

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell suspended Saints coach Sean Payton for the 2012 season effective as of April 16. General manager Mickey Loomis got an eight-game suspension, assistant coach Joe Vitt received six games and the club was fined $500,000. Two current Saints players -- linebacker Jonathan Vilma and defensive end Will Smith -- and two former Saints players -- Green Bay Packers defensive end Anthony Hargrove and Cleveland Browns linebacker Scott Fujita -- also have been suspended.

The NFL Players Association's grievance is scheduled to be heard by an arbitrator Wednesday.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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