NEW YORK – NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell will meet Monday with Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma to discuss Vilmas suspension that was temporarily lifted last week.
A person familiar with the plans told The Associated Press that Vilma will be in New York to present his case in the Saints bounties scandal for which he was suspended for the 2012 season. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the meeting has not been announced.
Vilma and three other players were suspended, but an appeals panel ruled last Friday that Goodell must clarify his earlier rulings to ensure no part of his decisions was based on salary cap violations. Goodell still could reinstate the suspensions to Vilma, New Orleans defensive end Will Smith, Browns linebacker Scott Fujita and free agent defensive end Anthony Hargrove for participating in a pay-for-injure program that violates the leagues detrimental conduct policy.
Smith, Fujita and Hargrove are expected to meet with Goodell on Tuesday.
Only Smith played on Sunday, when the Saints lost to Washington. Vilma was placed on the physically unable to perform list, while Fujita sat out Clevelands loss to Philadelphia with a leg injury. Hargrove was cut by Green Bay during the preseason.
Players and coaches implicated in the bounty pool have testified under oath in a related federal court case they never intended to injure opposing players. The appeals panel ruled that Goodell could suspend the four players as long as the discipline was attributable to conduct detrimental to the NFL. Special master Stephen Burbank has the jurisdiction to rule on undisclosed compensation, which violates the salary cap.
Study: NFL reaches gender milestone
The league earned its highest overall grade for gender diversity hiring practices, with the studys author lauding new initiatives set forth by the NFLs top executives.
The annual report by The Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport gave the league its third consecutive A grade on racial hiring and its first C-plus for gender hiring practices. The combined B score of 82.3 percent is an NFL all-time high.
In the league office, 28 women and people of color worked at or above the vice president level, an increase of 8 percent.
On the field, half of last seasons playoff teams had either an African-American head coach or general manager. Jacksonvilles Shahid Khan also officially became the first majority owner of color in league history.
Around the league
The Jets will make a decision on the availability of Darrelle Revis (concussion) on Saturday before the team travels to Pittsburgh.
Buffalo defensive tackle Marcell Dareus returned to practice after being excused to be with his family in Alabama to mourn the shooting death of his younger brother.
Minnesota cornerback Antoine Winfield missed practice to attend his brothers funeral. Anthony Travis was murdered in Winfields hometown of Akron, Ohio, last week.
St. Louis re-signed quarterback Kellen Clemens, released in the final round of cuts before the opener.
San Diego running back Ryan Mathews was cleared for contact but was limited in practice as the Chargers continued preparing for their home opener Sunday against Tennessee.
Arizona coach Ken Whisenhunt is inching closer to acknowledging that Kevin Kolb will be the starting quarterback for Sundays game at New England. Whisenhunt said that it doesnt look great for John Skelton (ankle) being able to play.