Tagliabue a good choice to resolve Bountygate issues

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell (left) stands with former commissioner Paul Tagliabue during a 2006...

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell (left) stands with former commissioner Paul Tagliabue during a 2006 news conference. Goodell has appointed Tagliabue to rule on player appeals from the bounty cases involving the New Orleans Saints. (JOHN GREISS/Reuters files)

MIKE ZEISBERGER, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 2:10 AM ET

Some random news and views as Week 7 of the 2012 season gets into high gear this weekend.

NEWS

Former NFL commish Paul Tagliabue has been brought in to rule on player appeals in the New Orleans Saints Bountygate saga.

VIEWS

Saints fans can't be happy about this.

While Tagliabue's reign running the league showed him to be a pretty stand-up guy, the fact that Roger Goodell picked the man he replaced as commissioner to hear the arguments of the four players involved is certain to bring up cries of a conspiracy theory on Bourbon St.

Is their justification for their fears? Probably not. At the same time, Tagliabue probably wasn't the so-called unbiased third party people in the Big Easy were hoping would come in.

But before there is any collective outrage coming out of the Bayou regarding this decision, keep in mind that Goodell said he consulted with NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith before approaching Tagliabue.

If the union is agreeable with this selection, then shouldn't Jonathan Vilma, Will Smith, Scott Fujita and Anthony Hargrove feel the same way?

Vilma was suspended for the 2012 season while Smith was banned four games. Fujita, now with the Browns, originally was barred three games, a sentence that has since reduced to one. Hargrove, a free agent, had his punishment whittled down from eight games to seven.

"To be clear, I have not consulted with Paul Tagliabue at any point about the Saints matter, nor has he been any part of the process," Goodell said in a statement.

Whatever. Just wake us up when this messy affair is over.

NEWS

Seahawk games continue to produce havoc with bettors.

VIEWS

The first thought here, upon seeing 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh decline a penalty that would have awarded San Francisco a safety in the final minute of his team's 13-6 win over Seattle on Thursday, was: "There are going to be a lot of bitter bettors out there."

Most of the lines heading into the game had the 49ers favoured by either 7, 7.5 or 8, meaning the final score was either a push, or a win for Seahawk backers. Had Harbaugh opted to accept the penalty, the 49ers would have covered all those lines because the final score almost certainly would have been 15-6.

Because the Seahawks turned the ball over on downs on the play, Harbaugh opted to take the ball and run out the clock rather than have Seattle attempt a trick play on the free kick that comes after a safety.

Oddsmaker Mike Perry of Sportsbook.ag said it was a costly turn of events.

"Seventy-five percent of the money was on the 49ers. So Harbaugh's decision against the safety was huge," Perry reportedly said.

Back in Week 3, Seattle's 14-12 victory over the Packers (thanks to Golden Tate's Hail Mary touchdown that wasn't) left some experts estimating that $150 million to $250 million US shifted hands because of the controversial ruling on the game's final play.

Maybe the safest bet for bettors is to just shy away from putting cash on Seahawk games.

NEWS

NFL fines Redskins and Bills $20,000 each for violating the league's procedures for reporting injury information

VIEWS

The Bills were punished for not listing Mario Williams on the injury report earlier this season while he was wearing a cast on his hand.

In the end, the Bills did a poor job of trying to mask the ailment because:

a) It's a cast. It's a hard thing to hide.

b) According to the league, a review of Bills transcripts shows head coach Chan Gailey first mentioned Williams' wrist injury Sept. 10.

Pretty damning evidence.

As for the Redskins, they did not provide to television and other news media a proper update on quarterback Robert Griffin III's status during the Oct. 7 game versus Atlanta, saying his return was "questionable" even though the team deemed he had suffered a concussion before the final gun had sounded.

The league is also investigating the Ravens for not including Ed Reed on injury reports after the future Hall of Famer admitted on radio that he has been playing with a torn labrum in his shoulder.

If teams want to avoid potential punishment like this, here is some advice; Why not just list every player who has a paper cut, like the Patriots' Bill Belichick does? On Friday, 11 Pats were listed as questionable.


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