|The players scored a victory on Friday, but Bountygate is far from over. (Getty Images)|
On Friday, following the three-member panel ruling that overturned the Saints bounty suspensions, the NFL issued a memo, a copy of which CBSSports.com's Mike Freeman obtained, to all chief executives and club presidents of the 32 NFL clubs that states "nothing in today's decision contradicts any of the facts found in the investigation."
The memo acknowledges the suspensions were overturned and quotes the ruling of the three-judge panel when it cited NFL commissioner Roger Goodell's "exclusive jurisdiction" and could not be sure that the players weren't simply suspended for "salary cap violations." The NFL acknowledges to the clubs that the players were reinstated.
However, the league writes in the memo that it doesn't believe the hearing invalidates its investigation and flatly states the commissioner will "reconsider the matter" and make a new decision on discipline.
"Nothing in today's decision contradicts any of the facts found in the investigation into this matter, or absolves any player of responsibility for conduct detrimental," the memo reads. "Nor does the decision in any way suggest what discipline would be appropriate for conduct that lies within the authority of the commissioner.
"Per the panel's direction, the commissioner will promptly reconsider the matter and make a determination of the appropriate discipline consistent with the standards set forth in today's decision. All clubs will be advised when that decision is made."
In other words, while the players scored a significant victory on Friday afternoon and will be able to play in the first week of the season (technically speaking anyway), this process is far from over.
As CBSSports.com's Jason La Canfora reported earlier, there's a strong likelihood Goodell will seek future/separate punishment under different guidelines.