According to Michael Silver of Yahoo! Sports, New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton planned on firing former defensive coordinator Gregg Williams two months before the NFL suspended him indefinitely for his role in the Saints bounty scandal.
“More than two months before he was suspended indefinitely by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell for his role in the scandal, Williams, according to a highly placed Saints source, had been essentially fired by coach Sean Payton, who sought a sharp change in defensive philosophy. In January, Williams’ lateral move to the St. Louis Rams was publicly portrayed as his own decision, but the source said Payton had made it clear that the Saints were moving in another direction. Williams couldn’t be reached for comment,” reported Silver.
Saints defensive tackle Sedrick Ellis believes the decision to let Williams walk was a good one.
“Well, yeah, teams knew we were going to be in a blitz 90 percent of the time, and they reacted accordingly,” defensive tackle Sedrick Ellis said Friday night following the Saints’ 27-24 preseason defeat to the Jacksonville Jaguars at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome. “It started to be where everything was three-step drop. I feel like people started to know exactly what was going on.”
Williams lived and died by the blitz and that’s what ultimately cost him his job with the Saints.