The NFL Players Association sent former commissioner Paul Tagliabue a letter asking him to address potential conflicts of interest he might have as the appeals officer in the Saints’ bounty case, according to ESPN.com.
The union asks Tagliabue in the letter to address its concerns within one day or it will file a formal request that he recuse himself from the case. The letter, reportedly sent Monday, is a precursor to a possible court filing by the NFLPA.
In addition, the (New Orleans) Times-Picayune reported Tuesday that Judge Ginger Berrigan from the U.S. District Court in New Orleans has given the NFLPA until 6 p.m. today to file a motion asking Tagliabue to recuse himself from hearing the players’ appeals, scheduled for Oct. 30.
According to Sports Business Daily, the calendar for the court to hear motions runs through Oct. 29 – therefore creating a scenario where Tagliabue could prepare himself for the players’ appeal, only to be removed by a court ruling before the Oct. 30 hearing .
ESPN says the NFLPA will file a motion to have Tagliabue recuse himself by Berrigan’s deadline.
Unless he relents and withdraws, Tagliabue likely will preside at the appeals hearing of Jonathan Vilma, Will Smith, Scott Fujita and Anthony Hargrove on Oct. 30.
PANTHERS: Coach Ron Rivera said the midseason firing of general manager Marty Hurney sends a succinct message to him and others in the organization that nobody’s job is safe.
Rivera said Carolina’s final 10 games are “an evaluation process” and he hasn’t ruled out firing assistant coaches or cutting players for underperforming.
“In a situation like this is, when action is being taken, it doesn’t mean the action has stopped,” Rivera said. “By no means is it over.”
STEELERS: Maurkice Pouncey is expected to return to theineup on Sunday, and Rashard Mendenhall and Isaac Redman might do the same.
Pouncey, an All-Pro center, will practice Wednesday after missing the game in Cincinnati Sunday due to a right knee sprain. Mendenhall (Achilles) and Redman (ankle), who top the running back depth chart, “have a chance” of playing, as well, Sunday, coach Mike Tomlin said.
The news is not all good though, as Pittsburgh (3-3) prepares to host the Washington Redskins (3-4). All-Pro safety Troy Polamalu and starting right tackle Marcus Gilbert have already been ruled out.
BILLS: A Buffalo development group has unveiled a proposal to build a $1.4 billion waterfront sports and entertainment complex that would include a new stadium for the team.
Presenting his plan to city officials on Tuesday, Nicholas Stracick described his company’s proposal as having the potential to preserve the Bills long-term future and change the city’s rust-belt image.
REDSKINS: Released running back Ryan Grant and brought back running back Keiland Williams.
Grant was signed last month after a pair of injuries left the backfield depleted behind starter Alfred Morris.