On his general take on the bounty scandal involving Gregg Williams and the New Orleans Saints:
“I think that the facts, when they first came out, I took a strong position. I was outraged by it. The players I talked to from my generation are outraged about it. We didn’t play with bounties. Dick Butkus didn’t have bounties on anybody, or there wouldn’t have been anybody to play because he would’ve killed them all. This is nonsense. Goodell came down strong, then we hear this Gregg Williams on tape. They’re doing a documentary: he knows he’s being taped! So he is saying, “let’s hit him in the head.” He’s very graphic, “let’s go check the ACL out, see if that ACL is really there, if it’s really healed, let’s see if that concussion’s really healed with Crabtree.” All these vicious, awful, knowing he’s being [taped], so you got to think this guy thinks it’s ok. Now I hear these ex-jocks, modern ex-jocks, back then “ah, this is the way it is in football, this is just the way things are,” and now I’m hearing some of the same stuff from the ESPN jocks doing that. The American people should be outraged. This is not the way it is. That’s not what the foundation of football was about. Goodell has already come down hard on Payton and Loomis and Gregg. Gregg Williams should never be able to be in the NFL again. He has done this at Tennessee, he did it in Buffalo, he did it with the Washington Redskins, he’s done it here. I got a YouTube video of when Peyton Manning’s neck got hurt the first time because he had a bounty on him by Gregg Williams where someone hit him low and another guy hit him around the head and twisted his neck. It was unbelievable. That’s where it started. That would trickle throughout the league. That would trickle down to college, down to high school football. The American public should be outraged at this, and I know Roger Goodell is outraged because if this spreads, this sport is dead.”
Bolded my favorite line.
Full Interview here: http://sportsradiointerviews.com/2012/04/09/frank-tarkenton-reacts-new-orleans-saints-bounty-scandal/
Very good read.