In papers filed Monday, Vilma argued that Commissioner Roger Goodell should not hear the appeal and asked for a delay in the process until the jurisdictional issue has been settled through NFL Players Association grievances filed last week.
Vilma's appeal also says the NFL has failed to presented evidence linking him to a system in which players were paid to injure opponents. It asks the league to provide documentation, including witness statements and the names of those witnesses.
Vilma was one of four players given suspensions of various lengths as a result of the NFL's bounty probe, along with Saints defensive end Will Smith (four games) and former Saints Anthony Hargrove (eight games) and Scott Fujita (three games).
The NFLPA sent the NFL a letter Monday reserving the other three players' appeal rights until the question of who hears the cases has been sorted out. Hargrove now is with Green Bay and Fujita with Cleveland.
''I disagree wholeheartedly with the discipline imposed,'' Fujita said in a statement emailed to The Associated Press. ''I've yet to hear the specifics of any allegation against me, nor have I seen any evidence that supports what the NFL alleges.
''I look forward to the opportunity to confront what evidence they claim to have in the appropriate forum,'' continued Fujita, a member of the NFLPA's executive committee. ''I have never contributed money to any so-called 'bounty' pool, and any statements to the contrary are false. To say I'm disappointed with the League would be a huge understatement.''
The players union grievances argue that Goodell is prohibited from punishing players for any aspect of the case occurring before the new collective bargaining agreement was signed last August. It argues that a CBA system arbitrator, and not Goodell, has the authority to decide player punishment under such circumstances, as well as rule on any appeals.