James Harrison may have let troubling information slip while on a Barstool Sports podcast this week. The former All-Pro linebacker told Going Deep that Pittsburgh head coach Mike Tomlin handed him “an envelope” after a massive hit on Mohamed Massaquoi.
Fans around the league have been wondering if this was a potential bounty placed by the Steelers. Shortly after the news broke, New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton chimed in on the conversation to share his thoughts on a subject he knows about very well.
“If people are waiting for the league to investigate that, they shouldn’t hold their breath,” Payton told Jason La Canfora of 105.7 The Fan in Baltimore. “I think what took place with us back in  in so many ways was a sham, and yet there wasn’t a lot we could do with it. The players were vindicated, but from a coaching standpoint, there is no union, there is no representation.”
Payton wasn’t done talking about how the league goes about its business with situations like this. He went as far as to say the NFL will sweep this under the rug instead of launching an investigation.
“That’ll be something that’s tucked away under the rug at Park Avenue. They’ll look into it briefly. Listen, don’t get me started on that. I lost $6 million in salary, and honestly it was something that I’ll never truly get over because I know how it was handled and how it was run and the reasons behind it. That’s just the truth.”
Payton was candid when asked for his thoughts on former Steelers LB James Harrison saying in a recent podcast appearance that Mike Tomlin handed him an envelope after a big hit on Mohamed Massaquoi in 2010. pic.twitter.com/mlVQlenCLD
— Luke Johnson (@ByLukeJohnson) May 14, 2020
The NFL suspended Payton for the entire 2012 season due to the Saints’ bounty system that was going on under defensive coordinator Gregg Williams. It got to the point where the league even tried to remove him as one of the 32 head coaches.
Whether or not you like Payton, it’s easy to understand why he might be frustrated with the league.
Since this story just emerged this week, the NFL could wait a few days before making a decision on either launching an investigation or letting it slide. Make no mistake though, Payton will be keeping a close eye on this one.
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