Suspended New Orleans linebacker Jonathan Vilma appeared in federal court Friday, where a judge will hear arguments on the league's motion to throw out his lawsuit that would overturn his bounty suspension, according to multiple reports.
While there's no clear date when U.S. District Judge Ginger Berrigan will rule, if she doesn't dismiss the lawsuit, she could still decide on Vilma's request to return to the Saints while the case moves forward.
Vilma has been suspended for the 2012 season by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell as part of penalties handed down to the Saints for a bounty program that offered defenders cash bonuses for hurting opponents. Vilma was singled out by Goodell as one of the leaders of the program.
Vilma, along with several teammates and Saints assistant head coach Joe Vitt have testified that Vilma never paid or accepted money for injuring another player. Vilma also is suing Goodell individually for defamation.