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Starke: Gibbs handed out $100 bills for QB hits

Posted on: March 6, 2012 12:37 pm
Edited on: March 6, 2012 2:02 pm
Gibbs, in his second stint as Skins coach. (Getty Images)
By Will Brinson

Gregg Williams, the man at the center of "Bountygate," worked under Joe Gibbs as the Redskins defensive coordinator from 2004 to 2007 (before he became head coach of the Bills; there is also a concern he ran a bounty program there). So naturally, Gibbs was asked about whether bounty programs existed in Washington. And he said they absolutely did not.

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But here's an interesting twist to that: George Starke, one of the original "Hogs" under Gibbs during his first tenure as 'Skins coach, appeared on ESPN 980 and said, via Dan Steinberg of D.C. Sports Bog, that Gibbs used to walk through the locker room and hand out $100 b ills to defensive players who knocked down the quarterback.

"Let’s be clear: the reason that the Hogs did that Hogs Night Out poster ... was, in the meeting after the game, Joe Gibbs would come in, he’d have a fistful of $100 bills," Starke said. "And if Dexter knocked the quarterback down three times, he would get three hundred-dollar bills. And Joe would pass the money out in the meeting, and we would have to duck."

(Hogs Night Out was a result of Starke and the linemen being mad they received no money, so they'd apparently sign Jack Kent Cooke's name to the check.)

Starke pointed out that Gibbs wouldn't consider the $100 handouts "bounties," but rather "incentives." And there's a big difference there, even if both are a violation of (current) NFL rules. Bounties contain a malicious intent to cause injury or physical harm to another player. Incentives are simply bonuses for doing your job well.

And while Starke pointed out that he didn't think Gregg Williams (who he doesn't know) would tell a player to hurt someone, he said that "George Allen did in fact put a bounty on Roger Staubach of 200 bucks, and the bounty was to knock him out ... Not to hurt him. Let's be clear about that. Knock him out... We used to call it drag-offs."

Now that is a bounty. And even if Starke doesn't think what Gibbs was doing would be considered a "bounty" and even if Gibbs wouldn't call it a "bounty," combining that description of injury to a person with the visual of Gibbs making it rain in the 'Skins locker room isn't exactly the best public relations for the former Redskins coach.

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Since: Aug 7, 2008
Posted on: March 7, 2012 3:14 am

Starke: Gibbs handed out $100 bills for QB hits

Goodell is slowly killing the league with all the "safer play" talk and the media attempting to dig up every story ever is fueling his ego even more. The sport will soon lose its luster as America's finest if it keeps down this path. Simply embarassing that stories like this arise because last time I checked, the purpose of playing on the defensive line or linebacking core was to hit the QB, RB, WR or whoever else has the ball. Goodell is a joke and the fact that he will be making $20 million in 2020 for running the sport into the ground is a travesty 

Since: Oct 20, 2006
Posted on: March 6, 2012 11:11 pm

Starke: Gibbs handed out $100 bills for QB hits

I think it is kind of funny that we focus on the hundreds or even a thousand given out for hard hits that might or might not injure the QB.  The truth is even if there was no bounty or instant incentives to hit a QB, there is one heck of a incentive called the contract that rewards hitting the QB.  Guys that routinely rank high in the sack catagory get paid...and it isnt just a few hundred more or a couple of thousand is millions.  Guys that stuff RB's with hard hits get paid.  A guy that is just a good tackler and good defensive player (think London Fletcher) dont do badly in pay, but they sure dont rake in Julius Pepper or Albert Haynesworth money.  While it is just not good sportsmanship to actually reward injuring other players, it is a very very fine line between that and wanting them to set on the bench for a while and collect their thoughts before returning a quarter or two or maybe the next game.

Dont want your precious QB's to be hit/injured as targets?  Then explain why you count and acknowledge the best at hitting them and teams reward them disproportionately.  This is a joke and is being used to show that the NFL is serious about looking serious about injuries without actually doing much to change the they probably shouldnt.

Since: Sep 26, 2010
Posted on: March 6, 2012 10:54 pm

Starke: Gibbs handed out $100 bills for QB hits

This whole story is unbelieveable.  Do people watch American Football?  The players wear helmets and armour (not padding, body armour) that looks more appropriate for trail bike riding than "sport".

The gladiatorial element of the game IS the reason for its success.  Players have been trying to knock players out of the game since they first thought about helmets - why have them otherwise?

People need to think a little about the game.  Stop moralising about "no-one should ever intentionally try to injure" the other player and wonder why they need to wear pads.  Simple solution is lose the pads and helmets.  Play "man on man".  The game would change terribly and no-one would watch as you would have a softer version or so many injuries you could not allow it. 

All coaches when the other team loses star players to injury (not horrible graphic ones with bones sticking out) would feel they have a better chance of winning.  The NFL is about winning.  The old line of "its not the score that matters, but how you play the game" does not apply in the NFL.  There is too much money.  The Olympics have an ideal of sportsmanship, the NFL has the Superbowl.

I think the rules should be applied to protect all players, not just QBs, and those rules exist.  Simply apply them and the dirty players get suspended. 

The thing that the NFL lacks is a judiciary where a foul act is punished with weeks on the sidelines.  Use video examples prior to a season starting of infringements and then apply the rules.  Players who are forced to sit out due to foul play will quickly be a liability and teams with deal with them.

But the moralising it dumb.  The idea of intent creating a legal case for battery - well what is boxing?  What is UFC?  Sports cross that line all the time.  Watch a Rugby League State of Origin fight (you tube has some compilations) and see the blood spill.  The players can't do it any more or they get suspended.   

Since: Jan 1, 2007
Posted on: March 6, 2012 10:32 pm

Starke: Gibbs handed out $100 bills for QB hits

The more we dig, the more it will be apparent that not only did the Redskins have bounties, the Saints did, The Eagles did under Buddy Ryan and who else?  The Giants?  The Patriots?  The Colts?  My point is, I think they ALL do or did.  Does anyone have trouble imagining Al Davis of the Raiders handing out $20 bills after a game?  (Al was more frugal.....)?  Nah, I am NOT picking on the specific teams above -- I really think every team has their own justified version of it.  Maybe even some of the teams make the Team Captain issue the challenge and make the pay-offs.  But I suspect this isn't restricted to the NFL.  Cash pay-outs?  Maybe that IS NFL only.  But how many colleges, especially those with ex-NFL coaches have their own version?  Hmm-"Great Game!  Car #2A is YOURS for the week!  Oh yeah, your hours at the laundromat are covered too this week...".  College programs have a long history of pay-offs in many forms.  Yeah, the star QB gets treatment.  But how about those guys in the trenches?  I think they're ALL dirty in this regard.  Clean-up is needed.  Are we (the fans at each level) willing / ready for the consequences? 

Since: Jul 17, 2007
Posted on: March 6, 2012 10:24 pm

Starke: Gibbs handed out $100 bills for QB hits

The only aspect of this "story" is Manley getting money. The money encouraged Dexter to buy illicit drugs which ensured money going into Marion Barrys drug empire, thus killing thousands of people in a horrible time for DC.

...continue with the wussification of the NFL...

Since: Sep 28, 2007
Posted on: March 6, 2012 9:56 pm

Starke: Gibbs handed out $100 bills for QB hits

Whether Brinson wants to believe it or not there is a difference between 100 dollar bills given as incentive to knock out a QB in an era where qbs were not protected as they are today nor was there much information known about concussions. Paying money (the amount being irrelevant) to INJURE opposing players specifically when you have been warned by the league to cease and desist is far worse.

Since: Mar 22, 2010
Posted on: March 6, 2012 9:49 pm

Starke: Gibbs handed out $100 bills for QB hits

Prayed it up? The job of the lineman is to get to the QB and knock him down and if they recieved extra incentive to do so that is in no way a bounty. No one said Joe paid his lineman to take out a QB, but people like you who have no belief in God want to jump on the fact that he is a Christian and attack. I hope someday you will learn how to pray and what the true meaning is of being a Christian. 

Since: Sep 7, 2006
Posted on: March 6, 2012 9:49 pm

Starke: Gibbs handed out $100 bills for QB hits

Dexter Manley was on 106.7 The Fan today in DC (blatant plug for one of my favorite radio shows) and he talked about the hundred dollar bills he got from Gibbs. He also said, unequivocally, that Gibbs gave out the money for knocking down the QB, not for injuries or attempts to injure. Manley was very clear when he said, and Mike Wise absolutely made sure he got the bottom line from Manley, that the money wasn't dirty. It wasn't a "bounty", it was a bonus for hitting a guy.

I'm no Redskin fan, I'm a New England fan that happened to move to Northern Virginia and the DC area teams are all I've got locally, so I'm not being a homer here and defending "my team" or anything like that. This is Will Brinson trying to make something out of nothing.

Way to go Will, nice job at sensational journalism. Getting a job at the Enquirer next? Enquiring minds do want to know...

Since: Mar 6, 2012
Posted on: March 6, 2012 9:24 pm
This comment has been removed.

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Since: Sep 16, 2006
Posted on: March 6, 2012 9:17 pm

Starke: Gibbs handed out $100 bills for QB hits

What kind of players rat out these things? This is locker room/team things. This kind of crap is disturbing.Players gettin paid millions and still after they retire have to still see some justification by complaining about concussions,bounties, and who knows what else.
Last time i checked NFL was a CONTACT sport.

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