Falcons Stay Silent About Pregame 'Interference' with Saints
New Orleans, LA
Atlanta Falcons coach Mike Smith has decided to remain silent regarding accusations that two of his players deliberately interfered with the New Orleans Saints pregame warm-up routine Sunday.
According to Saints linebackers Scott Shanle and Jonatha Vilma, Sean Weatherspoon and Jonathan Babineaux walked through their drill, talked trash and taunted former Atlanta and current New Orleans linebacker Curtis Lofton.
"They were talking (expletive) to our guy Curtis Lofton," Shanle said. "I couldn't even understand them. They were just walking all over our drills trying to mess with him."
"The Falcons acted like the baddest, toughest team in the league," said Vilma, who then approached a Falcons assistant coach standing nearby and asked him to remove the players but he "stood there smiling."
"Vilma went and told their coach it was classless, and they didn't even say anything. It set the tone for the day. It was classless, and they got what they deserved," added Shanle, saying it was the first time he had seen anything like that in his 10 seasons.
A member of the Falcons organization called the Saints "hypocrites" for complaining about another team's behavior while they endure historic punishment for the alleged bounty scandal.
The Saints then later handed the Falcons their first loss, 31-27, but receiver Roddy White refused to give New Orleans credit, saying that Atlanta "gave" the win to New Orleans.
"It's not like they came out here and won a game," said White, who finished Sunday's game with seven catches for 114 yards. "I think we kind of gave it to them."
Meanwhile, the Falcons have released defensive end Ray Edwards after a disappointing start to the season.
Edwards, the Falcons' big free-agent signing in 2011, started in four of the Falcons' first nine games this season, managing just nine tackles and no sacks at defensive end.
He signed a five-year, $30 million contract in July 2011 with the Falcons. With the move, Edwards walks away from the Falcons with the guaranteed $11 million in his pocket.
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