With the Saints' bounty scandal coming to its conclusion on Wednesday (at least, the beginning of the conclusion), it makes sense to look back at how it started. At some point along the way, obviously, someone in the Saints organization said something to someone that maybe should've stayed in house.
Who's the rat? According to Warren Sapp, it's former Saints tight end Jeremy Shockey. Here's how their Twitter conversation unfolded, complete with denial from Shock-J.
Sapp later defended his stance on NFL Network, saying his source was very close to the situation and he trusted what his source told him. Here's the full conversation with Rich Eisen:
Warren Sapp: I was sitting in the production meeting getting ready for the day and my source that was close to the situation informed me that Jeremy Shockey was the snitch initially. So I went with that. I trust my source unequivocally because he is right on top of the situation. I understand what this is. Shockey comes out and says that he's not. We just found out who 'Deep Throat' was and he almost died. I understand. Whenever you inform something of this caliber, your identity should be protected, but I was given that information and I went with it by a reliable source that I know.
Rich Eisen: Does it matter? Is that what players in that locker room are thinking about right now?
Sapp: No. They should be ducking making sure that they are not in the wake of these punishments that are coming out because as we see, the Commissioner is dead serious about the integrity of our game and the safety of the players. Rightfully so, and so on with the punishments. And if you are in that line, you'd better duck.
Eisen: The league also says that it did not speak with Jeremy Shockey.
Sapp: I did not call anybody at the league and ask them a thing and did not receive any information from them.
Eisen: But you believe from your source that Jeremy Shockey was the individual?
Sapp: That's the information I got and I trust my source.
Put as much stock in that as you'd like. Warren Sapp "heard" something, and Jeremy Shockey denied something he'd probably deny either way. I don't know if it's true, but it is a fun little theory and it certainly didn't make the NFL look good.
Shockey was most recently in the headlines for reportedly wanting to rejoin the New York Giants, or any team, really. Being labeled a clubhouse snitch, whether it's reality or fiction, isn't going to help his cause (at the very least, it's a bad idea to put him in the same city as Carmelo Anthony). And if Sapp is tweeting about it, then there are certainly people within the league bouncing about the same idea.
If Shockey does get back in the league, and it's on a team that plays the Saints, imagine the bounty on that guy.
Gracias, The Huddle.
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