Tony Dungy believes Gregg Williams‘ bounty system targeted Peyton Manning as far back as Williams’ tenure as defensive coordinator for the Titans from 1997-2000, and possibly again with the Redskins in 2006.
“I know they had them in Tennessee,” Dungy said in a text to Pro Football Talk. Although Williams reportedly had a bounty system in place during during his time in Washington, Dungy added he wasn’t sure whether bounties were offered when the Redskins injured Manning during a game over five years ago.
Dungy said during a Football Night in America broadcast last year that he believed Manning’s neck problems may have started with a hit by former Redskins defensive end Phillip Daniels in 2006. Williams was the Redskins’ defensive coordinator at the time. Manning was shaken up on the play, which wdid not draw a flag but resulted in a $5,000 fine for Daniels.
The allegation that Williams’ bounty system may have sparked Manning’s neck problems is very significant but, for now, still unfounded. Then again — just speculating here — if Williams acknowledged having a pay-for-play system with the Saints, and another coach claims Williams had one with the Titans, why should anyone believe he didn’t do the same during his tenure in D.C.?