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Thursday’s Morning Mashup: Saints LB Jonathan Vilma gets in dig at Jets while criticizing anonymous teammate 01.03.13 at 7:51 am ET
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‘™¦ An anonymous Saints player blasted first-year defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo in a New Orleans Times-Picayune story than ran Wednesday, and that did not sit well with Saints linebacker Jonathan Vilma.

“I’m bothered you reported it,” Vilma told the paper. “We’re not the Jets, who run to the media for everything.”

Under Spagnuolo, the Saints defense was ranked last in the NFL in total defense and allowed the most yards ever in one season (7,042). The unnamed player criticized Spagnuolo for his performance and his personality.

“He does have that good-guy persona, but he is a control freak and treats people like crap,” the player said. “[Spagnuolo has] 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.”

Meanwhile, Williams, who left his position with the Saints for the same job with the Rams a year ago but was suspended indefinitely for his role in the Saints’ bounty scandal, will not return to St. Louis, according to a report from Fox Sports. Williams’ son, Blake, who was the Rams’ linebackers coach this past season, also reportedly will not be retained.

‘™¦ The Jets get criticized for talking to the media too much, and now they might get fined for not talking enough. With Rex Ryan reportedly vacationing in the Bahamas while owner Woody Johnson searches for a new general manager, the team has yet to hold a season-ending press conference. The Jets scheduled a conference for Tuesday, but the league mandates it must be held within a week after the final game.

Ryan received a public vote of confidence from Johnson in a team statement on Monday, but there’s a great deal of uncertainty regarding the rest of the coaching and front office staff.

“Everyone is in limbo,” a source told ESPN.

‘™¦ Adrian Peterson, who rushed for the second-most yards in a single NFL season (2.097), wants to contribute to the Vikings in another way. The running back acknowledged Wednesday that he’s been pushing for a chance to help on special teams.

“For the past two years, I’ve been trying to get in on field goal block,” Peterson said. “Come in off the edge, you know? It’s just going to take one block for them to really be like, ‘OK, you know what? Let’s take the chance and let you go out there and get it done. Kickoff return, I wouldn’t mind getting back there. I’m in it to win.”

Peterson, who returned 16 kickoffs as a rookie in 2007 (averaging 25.8 yards), isn’t likely to have his request approved by coach Leslie Frazier, especially after Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski broke his forearm while blocking for an extra point earlier this season.

“He always asks,” special teams coach Mike Priefer said. “He’s a football player. Gunner, field goal block, returner. The guy is awesome. I always say yes, and then I ask the head coach and he says no. I know what the answer is going to be. I don’t even have to ask.”

Countered Peterson: “I believe in having your best players on the field, especially in critical times. You never know what can happen.”

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA: On Jan. 3, 1998, the Patriots lost to the Steelers in the divisional round of the playoffs, 7-6. Which Patriots receiver set a team playoff record (since broken) with nine receptions for 104 yards?

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Read More: Adrian Peterson, Gregg Williams, Jonathan Vilma, Rex Ryan
Anonymous Saints player rips DC Steve Spagnuolo 01.02.13 at 11:57 am ET
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A Saints player suggested that first-year defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo should have been fired following the defense’s struggles in 2012. The Saints finished last in the league in total defense and set a single-season record for most yards allowed.

“To give up what we have up can’t be all talent,” the player told The Times-Picayune. “Look at where his units [have] been ranked before. I think one top 10?”

The player said Spagnuolo was unwilling to listen to his charges and alienated them.

“Players have no say in anything,” the player said. “It was [a] complete opposite from before where it was a simple D that players had lot of control and say. We couldn’t suggest [expletive]. … Nothing ever changed. It was his way only.

“Don’t even get me started on lack [of] ability to adjust during games. Bad, bad, bad.”

Spagnuolo replaced Gregg Williams, who left for the Rams but then was suspended for his role in the Saints’ bounty scandal. Spagnuolo apparently didn’t make the same connection with the players.

“He does have that good-guy persona, but he is a control freak and treats people like crap,” the player said. “[Spagnuolo has] 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 Gregg, who guys enjoyed.”

Read More: Rumor Mill, Steve Spagnuolo,