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Vilma on Saints: 'We're not the Jets'

New Orleans Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma answering questions

New Orleans Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma answering questions during a news conference at the NFL football team's training facility, in Metairie, La. (July 28, 2011) Credit: AP

Angered by a report that cited an anonymous Saints player ripping defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo, Jonathan Vilma delivered a not-so-veiled shot at his former team.

"We're not the Jets who run to the media for everything," the Jets' first-round pick in 2004 said, according to Saints beat writer Larry Holder.

Vilma, who was traded to New Orleans in 2008, fired back at The Times-Picayune report for quoting an unnamed Saints player calling for Spagnuolo to be fired. Vilma, in a tweet, called anonymous sourcing “BS.”

When later asked if he disagreed with the player's comments about Spagnuolo, the former Jets linebacker said: “That’s not the question or the point. If he's man enough to tell you, he should be man enough to put his name on it. And you should do the same.”

An anonymous Saints player told The Times-Picayune Tuesday that Spagnuolo should be fired after the Saints (7-9) finished last in the NFL in total defense, last in run defense, 31st in pass defense, 31st in points allowed and tied for 29th in sacks. They also broke the record for most yards allowed in a season in NFL history and missed the playoffs for the first time since 2008.

“Trust me all the guys were being politically correct this season when answering questions,” said the unnamed player said. “It’s bad.”

He also had this to say about Spagnulo: “He does have that good-guy persona, but he is a control freak and treats people like crap. No patience and zero personality. (He) has a way of pissing players and our defensive coaches off with how he says and does things. (I) think it’s even harder after having (former defensive coordinator) Gregg (Williams), who guys enjoyed.”

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