Suspended St. Louis Rams defensive coordinator Gregg Williams is back in the NFL—kind of. As reported by ESPN and confirmed by Albert Breer of the NFL Network, Williams will be allowed to attend today's game between the Seattle Seahawks and Rams.
Can confirm ESPN report, Gregg Williams granted special permission to attend today's Rams-Seahawks game. It's a one-game exemption ...— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) September 30, 2012
... Per the NFL, Williams "will have no contact with players or staff" at the Rams game. His son, Blake, is the team's LBs coach.— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) September 30, 2012
League says Gregg Williams' ability to go to games as a fan after today will be handled on a "case-by-case basis".— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) September 30, 2012
Williams was suspended indefinitely during the offseason after audiotapes were released implicating him and various Saints players in a bounty program that would pay players bonus money if they injured an opponent.
He spent three seasons with the Saints as defensive coordinator, including the Super Bowl-winning team in 2009.
After the Saints lost to the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC divisional playoff game last January, Williams decided to join Jeff Fisher's staff in St. Louis. Williams and Fisher had previously worked together from 1994 to 2000 with the Houston Oilers and Tennessee Titans.
Roughly two months after Williams took the job with the Rams, a report in Sports Illustrated went into great depth and detail about the Saints' pay-for-play plan that led to the suspension of Williams, Sean Payton, Mickey Loomis and Joe Vitt.
The fact that Williams is being allowed to watch a game does not necessarily mean anything. He won't be allowed to contact anyone, and he has connections to the Rams, as Breer reports his son is on the team's staff.
It will be interesting to see how much, if at all, Williams is shown on television or talked about on the broadcast. It would be fun to see him get introduced and the reception he would get, but that won't happen.