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Notebook

Bounty witnesses accused of lying

Vitt

– Saints assistant head coach Joe Vitt said Thursday witnesses in the NFL’s bounty investigation of the New Orleans Saints have lied about him and the organization, and that their stories might change in federal court.

Alluding to a defamation lawsuit filed by Saints linebacker Jon Vilma against NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, Vitt angrily said he feels the truth about the pay-for-pain system will come out before U.S. District Judge Ginger Berrigan, who is presiding over the pending case in New Orleans.

“If anybody’s keeping a scorecard here, let’s take a look at this,” Vitt said. He referred back to his first meeting with reporters after the NFL released its bounty investigation findings in March, in which he said, “At no point in time did our players ever cross the white line with the intention of injuring, maiming or ending the career of another player. That never took place.”

Vitt’s comments came a day after The Associated Press reported that former Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams testified in recent NFL appeal hearings that he tried to stop the Saints’ bounty program, only to be overruled by Vitt. The AP obtained transcripts from the closed-door hearings, which were held for Vilma and three other players who had been punished in the bounty investigation.

911 tapes released

Police in the Dallas suburb of Irving where a Cowboys player was killed in a car crash released audiotapes of two 911 calls reporting the crash.

Defensive tackle Josh Brent faces an intoxicated manslaughter charge in Saturday morning’s crash that killed teammate Jerry Brown.

Irving police released tapes of two callers reporting an overturned vehicle. Both callers said smoke or fire appeared to be coming from the car. Police also released dash-cam video that shows an overturned vehicle.

According to an arrest affidavit, officers who arrived found Brent pulling Brown from the wreck. Police say they have not yet received the results of a blood-alcohol test.

Around the league

Washington rookie quarterback Robert Griffin III was back at practice, dealing with the effects of a sprained right knee as the team prepares for Sunday’s game against Cleveland. …

Injured Jets backup quarterback Tim Tebow (ribs) will be active for Monday’s game at Tennessee, but coach Rex Ryan said Tebow will likely not run the wildcat or participate as the punt protector on special teams. …

Dallas receiver Dez Bryant said he will play with a broken finger Sunday against Pittsburgh. Bryant was listed as a limited participant in practice Thursday.

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