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Joe Vitt issues a statement
"Information released by the NFL to the NFLPA yesterday resulted in the media inaccurately reporting that I was accused of pledging money to an incentive or a so called "bounty" program. The NFL never accused me of such conduct because I did not pledge any money for any incentive, pay for performance, bounty or any other alleged program in connection with any game, including the 2010 NFC Championship.
"The Commissioner confirmed that there is no such allegation or suspicion in a conversation that we had today and the NFL has publicly sought to clarify that the document that has been mischaracterized was not intended to implicate me -- formally or informally. I reaffirmed my pledge to the Commissioner to be an agent for change in helping to find new ways and practices to make our game safer for all players. I look forward to continued conversations with the league on this matter.
"Finally, it cannot be emphasized enough, none of our players, particularly those who are facing suspensions, ever crossed the white line with the intent to injure an opponent. I am proud of our players and stand behind them 100 percent and will do whatever I can to help restore their good names."
Former Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams has been suspended indefinitely by Goodell for his role in overseeing the bounty program, and coach Sean Payton is suspended for the entire season.
General manager Mickey Loomis is suspended for eight games. Former Saints defensive end Anthony Hargrove, now with the Green Bay Packers, has been suspended for eight games.
Former Saints linebacker Scott Fujita, now with the Cleveland Browns, has been suspended for three games. Saints defensive end Will Smith has been suspended for four games, and linebacker Jonathan Vilma has been suspended for one year.
For more coverage of the NFL, go to profootball.scout.com. Follow me on Twitter: @RavensInside
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