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Former Saints player did not grant release of Gregg Williams audio

The audio recordings – of former Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams urging his players to injure opposing players – were made public without Steve Gleason's permission. Gleason, a former Saints player who's the subject of a documentary film project, says the filmmaker released audio without consulting him.

By Staff / April 6, 2012

In this 2010 file photo, New Orleans Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams gestures in the second half of an NFL football game against the St. Louis Rams, in New Orleans.

Gerald Herbert/AP/File

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Former New Orleans Saints defensive back Steve Gleason says he did not grant a documentary filmmaker permission to release audio of former Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams instructing his players to knock certain San Francisco 49er offensive players out of last January's NFL playoff game.

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USATODAY.com reports that Gleason felt betrayed by filmmaker Sean Pamphilon.

"A multitude of feelings have passed through me. I feel deflated and disappointed. I feel frustrated and distracted. Nevertheless, these feelings will pass, and I will continue steadfast in my mission," Gleason said.

NFL.com reports the film documentary project about Gleason, who's battling a neuro-muscular disease, had special access to Saints team activities, including the pre-game meeting between Williams and his players.

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Yahoo! Sports first reported that Pamphilon decided to released the chilling audio on his website Thursday, providing fresh details about the Saints defensive bounty program and the overt way Williams encouraged Saints defenders to injure opposing offensive players for money.

Williams, according to the filmmaker, can be heard talking about paying a bounty for going after several 49ers, including quarterback Alex Smith, shortly before a playoff game between the Saints and the 49ers.

"Said Pamphilon: “At one point Williams says, ‘We hit [expletive] Smith right there’ – then he points under his chin [and continues] – ‘remember me.’ Then he rubs his thumb against his index and middle fingers – the cash sign – and says, ‘I got the first one. I got the first one. Go get it. Go lay that [expletive] out.’"

News about the Saints bounty program, where defensive players were paid cash for knocking opposing players out of games, broke earlier this year.

As a result, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell suspended New Orleans head coach Sean Payton for all of next season, pending an appeal heard Thursday, according to NFL.com. Williams was suspended indefinitely by Goodell.

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