Former NFL star Warren Sapp said Friday he had apologized to Jeremy Shockey for publicly labeling him the "snitch" in the New Orleans Saints’ bounty scandal.
Appearing on Boston’s 98.5 The Sports Hub, Sapp said he bumped into Shockey at a Miami Heat game a week after he controversially outed the former Saints tight end as the whistleblower who prompted the league’s investigation into the illegal payment program.
Sapp said he took the opportunity to pull Shockey aside, telling him, "’I apologize for putting it on the street level and making it derogatory towards you.’"
Shockey, who played for New Orleans from 2008 to 2010, vehemently denied that he informed the league about the alleged bounty program, whereby Saints players were paid bonuses for injuring opponents.
Executives at NFL Network, where Sapp works as an analyst, reportedly disciplined him for naming Shockey on the air, but allowed the former defensive tackle to keep his job.
"The information that was passed to me, I stand by my source, but I hate that I put it on a level, that wasn’t where it should be," Sapp said Friday. "That’s what I apologized for, because I put it on a way lower level than it should’ve been."
Sapp then quipped he would be willing to settle things mano a mano if Shockey, a fellow Miami Hurricane, still had an issue.
"The two times I’ve seen him I haven’t had a problem with him, but if he does we can go out in the grass and get it over with. I don’t have a problem with getting my knuckles a little scarred up," Sapp said, laughing.
"This isn’t life or death or anything like that. I mean, come on, we’re playing a kid’s game (football), getting paid a king’s ransom."