Jonathan Vilma ended his appeal over his punishment in the New Orleans Saints bounty case just an hour after it began on Monday morning in New York. Vilma's attorney Peter Ginsberg cited the league's refusal to provide more evidence as the reason behind the decision to pull out of the process.
The three other players appealing their suspensions, Scott Fujita, Anthony Hargrove and Will Smith, were given a recess to review the evidence provided, and the appeal will convene again at 1:45 p.m. ET.
Ginsberg called the appeal process a "sham." He added further that the evidence not shared by the league in advance of Monday's appeal hearing would exonerate his client and the other three players who were suspended, according to Jim Varney of the Times-Picayune.
Players appealing the league's suspension said that the league did not provide the evidence within the 72-hour window prior to the hearing as required. The recess was called to give the players' side more time to review the documents.
Vilma is suing NFL commissioner Roger Goodell for defamation based on claims made his role in the Saints bounty scandal. Ginsberg was, according to Varney, "vague" in alluding to additional legal avenues to seek recourse.