PITTSBURGH PA - JANUARY 15: Running back Rashard Mendenhall #34 of the Pittsburgh Steelers is tackled by the Baltimore Ravens during the AFC Divisional Playoff Game at Heinz Field on January 15 2011 in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
According to a story by Danny Cox of the NFL Examiner, two teams in addition to the New Orleans Saints, may have had their own "bounty" program, with cash payouts for injuring targeted opponents. The report mentions both the Tennessee Titans and yes, the Baltimore Ravens.
The New Orleans Saints have been harshly punished with fines, suspensions and the loss of draft picks. Players involved in 'Bounty-Gate' have not been singled out and stand to be punished at some point when the investigation is completed.
The story states that an article in the Detroit Free Press indicates the Titans ran a "players-organized incentive pool," which coaches were aware of, including then-defensive coordinator and now Detroit Lions head coach Jim Schwartz. Schwartz reportedly "handed out baseball bats or boxing gloves for big hits" with the top "prizes" being cash distributed by the players themselves.
The story goes on to say that other outlets such as Yahoo! Sports and ESPN have stated in stories that the Baltimore Ravens had placed bounties on Pittsburgh Steelers players Hines Ward and Rashard Mendenhall.
Click on the 'Jump' to read more about the allegations of the Ravens "bounty" program)
The comments that were made by Ravens outside linebacker Terrell Suggs on an Atlanta radio station were taken to mean the Ravens were trying to knock both Ward and Mendenhall out of the game. Suggs also admitted similar comments on an ESPN radio show and literally admitted the team was targeting the two Steelers players, saying:
"Definitely. The bounty was out on him (Mendenhall) and the bounty was out on (Ward). -- we just didn't get him between the whistles."
The story was posted on the examiner.com website (linked above) on March 23rd, and although this was dated over a week ago, the league's investigation is far from over and while no one expects the Ravens to be receiving any sort of punishment, the NFL has already started making sure there are no more breaking stories like the one that has blackened the eyes of the league's wholesomeness in what is obviously a violent enough game without this sort of news.