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Sean Payton: No blame in failed appeal

When Michael Silver of Yahoo! Sports digs into the troubling odyssey of filmmaker Sean Pamphilon and his hot-to-the-touch Gregg Williams audio, we listen.

Nestled within Silver's Wednesday piece about Roman Harper and former Saints linebacker Jo-Lonn Dunbarearning $200 for "whack" hits, we learned that New Orleans coach Sean Payton didn't view the ill-timed release of the Williams tape in April as pivotal to his failed appeal of a season-long suspension from the league.

Silver's initial report on the Williams sound went viral on the morning of Payton's appeal April 5. As the Saints coach was preparing for his appeal in front of NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, the audio's release seemed to bury any chance of that proceeding successfully.

NFL Players Assocation executive director DeMaurice Smith wasn't against the audio's release, according to Silver. Smith believed the tape would help the suspended players, while characterizing Williams as an "out-of-control coach," but a knowledgeable source said the union regretted the timing of the audio's release in relation to Payton's appeal, "as it appeared the coach had been hung out to dry."

A source close to the coach said Payton doesn't blame the NFLPA for the timing.

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