A former Atlanta Falcons superstar is accusing the Tampa Bay Buccaneers of committing a dirty and dangerous act back in the 2012 season.

John Abraham played for the Atlanta Falcons from 2006 to 2012. He earned two Pro Bowl nods as well as First and Second-team All-Pro selections in 2010 and 2008, respectively, during his time in Atlanta.

During an appearance on “The Water Boyz” show, Abraham recalled a conversation he had with former Tampa Bay Buccaneers offensive tackle Donald Penn. Abraham alleges that he was warned by Penn that the Bucs players were instructed by coaches to intentionally injure Atlanta’s players:

“(Penn) was like, ‘Hey man, be careful out here. The coaches told us to hurt you all.’ I was like, ‘Stop playing.’ He’s like, ‘Nah, they told us to hurt y’all. So we’re going to be going extra. After the whistle, we’re going to be doing everything to try to mess with y’all.’”

JoeBucs.com reached out to Penn on Abraham’s allegations. Per the website, Penn claimed that “an order from Bucs coaches to hurt players are completely ridiculous and dirty play was never even implied in Bucs’ player meetings with coaches.”

If this sounds familiar, it’s because the New Orleans Saints were caught doing exactly what the former Atlanta Falcons star accuses the Buccaneers of. Their infamous “Bountygate” scandal came to light in 2012 and led to some of the biggest punishments in pro sports history.

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The Saints paid out bonuses to their defensive players if they managed to injure and take an opposing player out of the game. Head coach Sean Payton was suspended for the entire 2012 season, while GM Mickey Loomis assistant HC Joe Vitt and several players received multi-game suspensions.

On top of that, New Orleans was fined $50,000 and stripped of their second-round draft choices in 2012 and 2013.

John Abraham Is Second In Sacks Among Atlanta Falcons

John Abraham walked away from the Atlanta Falcons with 68.5 career sacks, placing him second all-time. He only trails Claude Humphrey, who posted 99.5 during his 11-year run with the organization (1968 to ’78).

Sacks weren’t officially a stat during Humphrey’s playing days, so some sources list Abraham as the all-time leader. That said, his 24 forced fumbles are a franchise record.

Abraham helped the Falcons to two NFC South division crowns (2010 and 2012) and four playoff appearances. They got as far as the NFC Championship Game in 2012, losing to the San Francisco 49ers.

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