Sean Payton

USA Today Sports

NFL hires former Saints coach who called them "dirty organization"

Sean Payton called the hiring "unbelievable"

Seth Dunlap
December 10, 2017 - 7:00 pm

The NFL has hired a former Saints coach who was an intrumental whistleblower in the bounty scandal, according to FOX Sports' Jay Glazer.

Mike Cerullo, an assistant coach on the defensive staff during the 2009 season, has been hired to work as a director of football administration, according to Glazer.  What makes this even more troubling is that Cerullo would be working in the department that is currently reviewing Payton's behavior during last Thursday's loss to the Atlanta Falcons.   He could have input into what penalties Payton, and the Saints organization, could face.

Considering Cerullo once called the Saints a "dirty organization", and was one of the NFL's key witnesses against Sean Payton and other Saints' coaches during Bountygate investigation, his impartiality towards the team must be considered iffy, at best.  A league spokesman said Cerullo would have no input in determining any discipline the Saints, or Payton, will face in the aftermath of Payton's action during last Thursday's game.  However, Pro Football Talk initially reported that Cerullo would indeed play a role in that investigation.  The water here is a little murky.  

The Saints have previously dismissed Cerullo as a disgruntled ex-employee who was fired by the team after the 2009 season.  He has admitted at being "angry at being let to from the Saints" in appeal hearing during the Bountygate investigation.   He sent an email to the league in 2011 calling the Saints a "dirty organization" and suggesting they be investigated.

Coach Payton reacted to the reported hiring on Twitter this morning, saying he was disappointed and found it "unbelievable".


Comments ()