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The NFL Sets Grievance Hearings For Saints On May 16 And May 30

Jonathan Vilma's lawyer, Peter Ginsberg, says that the two grievances for the bounty investigation of four New Orleans Saints players filed earlier this month will be heard on May 16 and May 30 by the National Football League.

Saints players including Vilma, defensive end Will Smith, Green Bay Packers defensive end Anthony Hargrove, and Browns linebacker Scott Fujita will have their first hearing focusing on the argument within the CBA preventing the league from acting against players for conduct issues prior to August 4, 2011. There is also a question whether appeals should be heard by Commissioner Roger Goddell versus Tod Cottrell and/or Art Shell, who are compensated by the league and the NFLPA.

The hearing on May 30 revolves around the compensation paid to players by players (and others) in violation of the salary cap. The thought is that Special Master Stephen Burbank should resolve the issue versus the commissioner, plus the players have yet to be shown prove that money was actually exchanged.

Will the NFL show their hand, and provide the so-called evidence that they've amassed? Or is this just a push to punish a team that put the discussion of bounties on the national stage?

For more on the New Orleans Saints and Atlanta Falcons, check out SB Nation's NFL page, The Falcoholic and Canal Street Chronicles.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.