According to WVUE-TV in New Orleans, Louisiana, New Orleans Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma says that he will be allowed to suit up and play this Sunday versus the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Vilma told the station “I’ll be allowed to practice, I’ll be allowed to play versus Tampa Bay (on Sunday)”.
This comes following Vilma’s lawyers filing a 29-page motion on Monday in a Louisiana court attempting to have his season-long suspension by the NFL dropped. In the papers filed Vilma and his attorneys have stated that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has engaged in a “farcical review” of his previously vacated disciplinary action prior to re-issuing the year-long ban on Vilma last week. Vilma has also asked U.S. District Court Judge Ginger Berrigan to bar the NFL Commissioner from handling any other matters in regards to the Saints Bounty Scandal and to appoint a neutral arbitrator.
Vilma has an appeal pending with the league currently as well which will allow him to play as well and now that he is eligible to return to the Saints roster following his six weeks on the Physically Unable to Play list (PUP list) following a knee injury which he suffered last season, he is ready to suit up and play. Vilma along with fellow suspended players due to the Saints Bounty Scandal, Scott Fujita (now with the Cleveland Browns), Will Smith and Anthony Hargrove (still remains a free agent) have all been eligible to play and receive their paychecks until the the NFL rules on their appeals which will probably occur newt week sometime.
Vilma is nine-year pro, who has been named to the Pro Bowl three times and is also one of the major captains of the Saints defense and without him anchoring their middle linebacker position this season they have struggles and gotten off to a 1-4 start.