Tarkenton: Gregg Williams “ought to go to prison”

There is a great chance that Gregg Williams never coaches again in the NFL for his involvement in the bounty scandal with the New Orleans Saints. But that isn’t good enough for a former Hall of Fame quarterback who was often running for his life during his career.

Fran Tarkenton, who played 18 years in the NFL as a QB for Vikings and Giants, was interviewed on ESPN radio in Chicago recently, and gave his thoughts on what took place down in Louisiana. Tarkenton is a very outspoken individual, never one to shy away from giving his opinion when it is asked. He was very critical when it came to light that Saints players were being paid to cause injury to other players and he think that Gregg Williams deserves a much worse punishment than just being banned from the NFL:

“He should be banned forever. He ought to be convicted. He ought to go to prison,”

Tarkenton also believes that players that were targets of the Saints should file lawsuits:

“Absolutely! Absolutely when someone’s going to try to take you out, to take your ACL and destroy your career purposely. We know the repercussions from the concussions and what happens, and now with science as it is and our guys that have passed on and given their brains to science. We know that these head traumas and concussions lead to Alzheimer’s . They lead to Dementia, Lou Gehrig’s disease. We lost Wally Hilgenberg, one of my great teammates in Minnesota. It came back he died of Lou Gehrig’s disease and they attributed that to head trauma. Now this guy’s saying hit him in the head, hit him in the head, and when they’re on the ground hit him in head some more, hit him in the head some more, kill the head, kill the head, kill the head. What kind of sport are we talking about here?”

The former Minnesota star is just summing up what many already are thinking. Williams took complete advantage of a privilege it is to be a member of the NFL. The bounties come as no surprise, as this is a culture that many believed already existed around the league. But when the audio was released last week, that show the complete disregard for sportsmanship and respect to those that Williams and the Saints shared that privilege with, it becomes harder to give any kind of leeway to them.

Williams deserve to be punished as fully as one can. What he orchestrated is heinous and disgusting. If charges and suits follow, I wouldn’t be one to say they shouldn’t, and neither would Tarkenton.

  • Andromeda451

    Going to prison is too easy for the likes of Williams. He needs to be in a supermax, no parole, comes out with a toe tag. The head coach should be banned for 10 years minimum. ANY player that received a bonus’ should likewise be banned from play for 3-5 years.

  • Cprimo

    As a police officer, there is no statute to support charges being filed, so please stop the maddness. Wrong he was, he will in all likelyhood not coach again. I’ve said it before, if the players played in such a vile way the hit(s) should’ve/would’ve been fined by the all powerful commissioner. So what Williams said was taken as ranting to pump up players for a game. What is $1000 to someone that makes millions, really?! Prison, really, lol. Fans love the game for the controlled violence, and when a devistating hit is delivered the fans eat it up, remember Mr. Ronnie Lott. Awesome player. I conceed that players are being found to suffer for there chosen profession and are compensated very very well compared to other professions, but it is their chosen profession. $$$$$$ The NFL has videos about devestaing hits that it makes lots of movie selling but then punishes the very same people for making those very hits. two faced Die Hard Saints fan.

  • denise

    it’s Fran, not Frank…

    • http://thevictoryformation.com Dave K

      just a typo, thanks denise

  • cycledan

    My whole thing is that I believe the kind of shit that Williams said is pretty wide spread in the NFL. Maybe the pay for injuries is beyond what most teams do but I am sure the firey speeches talk up putting opponents out of games.

  • cycledan

    On another note, Derek is not exactly washed up, is he? 4-4 today with over a .400 batting average and Rivera gets his first save as well.

    Also Mets won in the bottom of the 9th and are 4-0. It will be tough for any NL East team to beat the Phillies but the Mets may be better than anyone suspected.

  • jimnick

    cycledan WTF does baseball stats have to do with this??????????????

  • cycledan

    cycledan WTF does baseball stats have to do with this??????????????

    If there was a baseball post, I would have commented there. The last post of the day used to be the “Happy Hour” post and was the general sports of the night place to post.

  • http://www.yardbarker.com/blog/ceeels Chris

    I mentioned, sending them all to jail in the wake of this story. I do think now that the NFL needs to handle this thing as internally as possible, & that is just absolutely one of the most unsportsmanlike things I ever hear of.
    So if Williams & any one player were to get a conviction, what is a legitimate sentence for them?
    & the NFL is a very private organization, they handle their business, & we all know they handle it well.
    I want to hear Mr. Goodell & hear what he has to say about more of the investigation(s), & really Mr. Tarkenton is in his own right to be upset, but we need to keep this thing as closed as possible, we are all upset about this.
    Can’t believe what my ears tell me. Are they deceiving? Kill another player. Is/was he (Williams) out of his damn mind?
    Another line has been drawn in the sand, is crossed. We all need to think clearly here, do we need the police to actually get involved? If Goodell says yes, then we go with it. I just want to know that this isn’t going to overwhelm him, & in case it does, the Commish should have in place, private law enforcement officers they hired, to come in & handle the job. Not any other authority.
    Too much outside interference will meddle with things too much… I admit it, I did say throw them all in jail at first, but in the heat of the beginning, I also have to admit, it made me really mad, & I was coming from a very angry point of view.
    To think someone is going to selfishly injure another player, on purpose, for whatever reason, is just absolutely low down & dirty, & has no valor in that.
    I’ve had time to think about this one. We are all pretty upset, & need to look out for our sport, as much as possible, because this definitely endangers it.

  • Frank

    Tarkenton is an idiot. Yes, he’s very outspoken, and needs to think before opening his mouth. This has been going on since the NFL was around. The Commish is just targeting the Saints because some loud mouth opened his chops about the whole thing..$$$$ is not the object here. This happens in all football genres, high school, college, etc… So go after them all.. Coaches teach the players to go after the star players it makes it easier to W I N !!! Get over it….Punishment is too harsh. Who Dat !!!

  • old LB

    As a former Division I college football player and 2year professional football player, I don’t understand the mass hysteria. We’ve all had coaches that were over zealous and intense. We’re involved in a violent sport with strong adult men. You can’t hit or tackle a man without bad intention and force because he will run right through you. I remember once in a game, a running back stiff-armed me and ran for another 5 yards. My coach at the time told me the next time a running back does that, I should grab his arm and break it off. I knew he didn’t mean it literally. He was trying to get a point across to me!! You hit hard and with bad intention because you’re playing against strong men not children. People please, Fran please! Really?

  • USA

    throw him in jail. and olice officer dude, your not god. you can file charges. RICO act. what they did is the same as organized crime. stop being an obama PC bot. and open you eyes.

  • http://www.usasports360.com USA Sports 360

    When I was a Kid the Vikings were my all time favorite football team. I remember Tarkenton playing some great football and being one of the all time best in my book. The stuff that went on back then is just as bad as the Gregg Williams stuff. For Tarkenton to make these kinds of statements I have to wonder if had took to many hits to the head.

  • malizaar

    I get it…. The idea too purposly hurt somebody too that degre..? But, isn’t that the attraction of Pro-Football..? Besides these athletes get paid large sums of $ for said demonstration… Otherwise, where else would an athlete w/an I.Q. lower than an anorexic’s dress size make that kinda money….. LMAO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Steve

    Tark should thank Williams without them attacking and putting Favre out of football everyone would be saying Fran who. Then nobody would even ask his opinion. The Saints should crawl in a hole for allowing Williams to go on with his brutality.

  • Rene Carr

    Speaking as someone who has played the game back some 38 years ago and continue to love it. There a certain amazement at writing what Mr. Tarenkenton has to say on the subject .. when you consider some of the hits that he and some of his contempories were subject to in his day not to mention what the framed purple people eaters did to their opponets on the field of play before there where rules what I believe the NFL did to the Saints had to do more with creating a legal brief for a defence against the type of lawsiuts that the former how turned lawyer Trankenton is calling for.Despite what people might think U.S. style football is not a gentle sport and should never be made to be that way . That’s why the terms.” The Gridiron”and “winning is not everything it is the only thing makes football the ultimate test of a persons will power. Greg Williams not will not change unless the current NFL leadership no longer has the stomach for it. I once had a coach tell me I want you to go out there and knock somebody’s private parts in the dust, and at the end of the day there are only two ways to see it you are neither the one looking down at him in the dust or looking up you decide. And I believe Mr. Goodell will have his in the dust moment,because sooner or later the lawyers will find away to get their hands on the NFL owners checkbooks. And you wonder why there will be a special place reserved in hell for them this is just one man’s opinion I invite your replies.

  • http://none Darrell

    I think the players should be banded for life also. There all assholes. $10,000 is nothing to them, but yet they did it knowing it could have finished there playing time as football players. Some other players should talk to these guys!!!

  • Darrell

    I was just looking over what some of the other people were saying. I think there OK with getting payed to go out there & try to MAYBE kill other players or stop them from playing forever.. I bet if someone on there team got hut, they might wine a different tune. I never heard of any of the old players getting payed extra money, to take someone out………….