Saints Bounty Discipline Upheld: NFL Injury Report Changes Next?

The NFL announced earlier today that the punishments handed down on the New Orleans Saints coaching staff and front office were being upheld for the most part. There is a chance the individual financial penalties could be reduced, and there is a chance the 2013 second round draft pick could be modified on appeal at the end of next season.

Over the weekend, Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio raised some interesting points regarding NFL injury reports. The reports' value has been considered primarily for gambling and fantasy purposes (sort of one in the same, I suppose). However, in light of the bounty scandal, and particularly the Gregg Williams audio from the night before the 49ers-Saints game, it is worth considering how much opposing teams consider the information on an injury report.

Florio mentions potentially following hockey's lead where injuries might be reported as "lower body" or "upper body." In the case of the 49ers-Saints stuff, aside from the Kyle Williams mention, everything else involved issues that did not appear on any injury report and were not even based on specific injury histories.

For the 49ers, Coach Harbaugh kept things pretty generic in 2011, but with things like concussions, it is still something that can be figured out from the reports. Do you think there is anything of significant that can be done with injury reports, or would it really make any difference at this point?

DISCIPLINE UPHELD IN SAINTS BOUNTY MATTER;

FINANCIAL PENALTIES FOR INDIVIDUALS COULD BE REDUCED

The New Orleans Saints, along with General Manager Mickey Loomis, Head Coach Sean Payton, and Assistant Head Coach Joe Vitt, were notified today that after careful consideration of their appeals, Commissioner Roger Goodell has upheld the discipline that was imposed for continuing violations of the league's anti-bounty rule that endangered player safety over a three-year period.

The club and the individuals will be expected to cooperate in any further proceedings and to assist in the development and implementation of programs to instruct players and coaches at all levels on principles of player safety, fair play, and sportsmanship.

If they embrace the opportunity and participate in a constructive way, Commissioner Goodell said he would consider mitigating the financial penalties on the individuals. In the case of the team, the commissioner would consider whether there are factors that would support modifying the forfeiture of the team's 2013 second-round draft choice.

Sean Payton's suspension without pay for the 2012 NFL season will begin on April 16.

The suspensions without pay of Mickey Loomis for eight games and Joe Vitt for six games will begin at the end of the preseason.

At the conclusion of their suspensions, the commissioner will review the status of each of the three individuals to determine their eligibility for reinstatement.

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