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View Full Version : Report says Patriots taped St. Louis before SB 36



Sollozzo
02-02-2008, 08:50 PM
http://sportsline.com/nfl/story/10615544

NFL denying it though. Call me stupid for not believing them. If the Patriots denied it, then it must be false!





NFL, Patriots deny report that N.E. taped Rams before Super Bowl


Feb. 2, 2008
CBSSports.com wire reports
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PHOENIX -- A member of the New England Patriots' video staff taped the St. Louis Rams' last walkthrough before the 2002 Super Bowl, a Boston newspaper reported Saturday.
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The NFL, however, said it was satisfied this was not another Spygate.

"We were aware of the rumor months ago and looked into it. There was no evidence of it on the tapes or in the notes produced by the Patriots, and the Patriots told us it was not true," NFL spokesman Greg Aiello told the Associated Press.

Citing an unidentified source, the Boston Herald reported that a Patriots employee recorded the Rams' walkthrough at the Superdome in the New Orleans a day before the Super Bowl. New England beat the heavily favored Rams 20-17 for its first NFL title.

The Herald reported that a source close to the Patriots in the 2001 season said the team held a walkthrough at the Superdome in New Orleans before the game on Feb. 3, 2002. After the Patriots took a team picture, a member of their video department stayed inside the stadium and taped the Rams' session.

It was not known whether the cameraman was told by the Patriots to film the practice or what he did with the tape, the Herald said. The Rams were two-touchdown favorites, but lost on Adam Vinatieri's last-second field goal.

"The suggestion that the New England Patriots recorded the St. Louis Rams' walkthrough on the day before Super Bowl XXXVI is absolutely false. Any suggestion to the contrary is untrue," Patriots spokesman Stacey James told the AP.

Rams spokesman Rick Smith, reading a statement from team president John Shaw, said, "At this point, we have no comment."

The unbeaten Patriots will try to win their fourth Super Bowl in seven seasons Sunday when they play the New York Giants.

Early this season, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell fined New England coach Bill Belichick $500,000 and docked the team $250,000 and a first-round draft pick after the Spygate scandal. The Patriots were accused of videotaping New York Jets defensive coaches as they signaled to players.

New England did not have a walkthrough Saturday. The Giants held one at the Arizona Cardinals' practice facility.

A walkthrough is done without pads or helmets, giving teams a chance to practice their formations.

Goodell spent much of his state of the game address Friday talking about that episode. He said he did not think the Patriots used such tapes to win previous titles.

"There was no indication that it benefited them in any of the Super Bowl victories," he said.

Goodell also defended his decision to destroy notes and videotapes linked to the Spygate, saying "there was no purpose for them."

Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pa., who sent Goodell a letter asking for explanation, said Goodell's response "didn't make any sense at all."
AP NEWS
The Associated Press News Service

Copyright 2007-2008, The Associated Press, All Rights Reserv

McClintic Sphere
02-02-2008, 09:17 PM
Goodell might as well be a member of the Patriot's PR department.

You just know 99% of these players past their prime that "rejuventated themselves" with the Patsies, are mainlining the HGH as well.

Sollozzo
02-02-2008, 09:24 PM
I wouldn't be surprised if the Pats taped on and off from 01-07.

And people wonder why some despise these guys?

Sucks for good vets such as Marshall Faulk and Tory Holt (and all of the other Rams who might have gotten screwed), if this does indeed come out to be true.

McClintic Sphere
02-02-2008, 09:29 PM
Here is a whole lot more from the guy that use to do the dirty work for the Patsies:

http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=3226465

By Mike Fish
ESPN.com
(Archive (http://x.go.com/cgi/x.pl?goto=http://search.espn.go.com/keyword/search?searchString=mike_fish&name=SEARCH_m_archive&srvc=sz))


LAHAINA, Hawaii -- Matt Walsh worked seven years with the New England Patriots before being let go on Martin Luther King Day in 2003. He was on the New Orleans Superdome sidelines when the Pats kicked off their dominant run, upsetting the St. Louis Rams in the 2002 Super Bowl. He wasn't a chiseled athlete, but a go-getter who climbed his way up the team's support staff ladder -- first as a public relations intern, then as a video assistant and later, in his last year, a college scout. Mostly, though, his years with New England were spent shooting football video. He was the third, and last, employee on the video staff.

In his words, he was Matt Estrella before Matt Estrella, a reference to the Patriots video assistant caught filming the Jets' defensive signals by league officials last September at halftime of a game against New York -- the violation that birthed "Spygate" and led, in part, to some of the heftiest penalties in league history. New England coach Bill Belichick was fined $500,000 -- the biggest fine ever for a coach -- and the team was docked its first-round draft choice this year. And now, Walsh, 31, an assistant golf pro on Maui, might be positioned to further pull back the curtain on the Patriots' taping history, expose where and how they gained advantages and, perhaps even, turn over video proof.

If Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pa., the top Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, is serious about calling a hearing to delve into the issue -- particularly the questions of why the NFL hastily destroyed all evidence, including tapes handed over by the Patriots, and what other as-yet-undisclosed material might be out there -- perhaps one of his first calls should be to Walsh, who in conversations with ESPN.com suggested he has information that could be damaging to both the league and the Patriots. In a New York Times story on Friday and again at a news conference later in the day, Specter expressed frustration with a lack of response from the NFL to his Nov. 15 letter inquiring about the league's investigation. He said NFL commissioner Roger Goodell would eventually be called before the committee to address, among other things, the destruction of the tapes.

NFL officials and Patriots employees possibly could be brought before the committee to testify. Walsh told ESPN.com that, in the wake of the cheating scandal that broke early in the season, he has never been contacted by NFL officials to inquire about his insight into the Patriots' illegal taping practices, which he says date back to his time with the franchise. Nor, he said, has there been any communication with the Patriots.

[+] Enlarge (http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=3226465#)
http://assets.espn.go.com/photo/2008/0201/nfl_walsh_200.jpg (http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=3226465#)Mike Fish, ESPN.com
Matt Walsh might hold the key to 'Spygate,' but isn't unlocking any doors.


"If they're doing a thorough investigation -- they didn't contact me," Walsh told ESPN.com. "So draw your own conclusions. Maybe they felt they didn't need to. Maybe the league feels they got satisfactory answers from everything the Patriots sent them." Goodell said at his annual address to the media at the Super Bowl on Friday that the tapes turned over by the Patriots date back only to 2006, well after Walsh had left the organization. Does Walsh know anything that might be of interest to that inquiry? He won't say, but he hasn't dodged the suggestion that he does. On a number of occasions in interviews with ESPN and ESPN.com in recent weeks, he has hinted about evidence and information he might be able to provide.

"No, the league has never called me," he said. "Neither have the Patriots. And really, I would be surprised if they did. Then all of a sudden -- I don't know how much the league or Patriots know about my stance or how I feel about things -- for them to put in a call to me, what are they going to say? Are they going to try and threaten me? Or say, don't talk about it? Then, they are putting themselves out there and looking bad as far as if I turn around and say, 'Hey, guess what, the league called me and said [we're] gonna take away your pension if you say anything about this.'"

Later, Walsh said his reference to a pension meant his 401k retirement plan. Walsh suggested he could have blown the whistle long ago, if he'd been so inclined. "If I had a reason to want to go public or tell a story, I could have done it before this even broke," he said.

"I could have said everything rather than having [Eric] Mangini be the one to bring it out." It is widely assumed that Mangini, the Jets head coach and former Patriots assistant under Belichick, was responsible for exposing the Patriots' spying tactics earlier this season. Several members of New England's staff came to the Jets with Mangini when he took the head job in New York, including assistant coaches Brian Daboll and Jay Mandoleso and video director Steve Scarnecchia, a former Patriot video assistant. The Jets' staff, under orders from team management, refused comment for this story. "Obviously, Mangini knew what was going on and it had been going on for a while," Walsh said.

"They tried to catch them doing it last year and weren't able to. So they were just waiting for them to throw the camera up this year on the sideline. But afterwards, I get the impression the league said to them, 'Hey, kind of back down from this; let us take care of it,' because Mangini probably could have come out and said more, made more of a deal out of it if he wanted to." Walsh said that when he worked with the Patriots, a very limited number of people within the organization were privy to details about the team's video practices, notably video director Jimmy Dee and Ernie Adams, Belichick's prep school friend and right-hand man (http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/eticket/story?page=adams). Walsh said that during his tenure in New England, no taping was done without Dee's knowledge. As for the prospect of Adams sharing insight into the suspicious practices, Walsh said: "You've got a better chance of him telling you who killed JFK than anything about New England. There are lots of stories there. He told me stories of things they used to do in Cleveland [where Adams assisted Belichick with the Browns]." [+] Enlarge (http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=3226465#)

http://assets.espn.go.com/photo/2008/0201/nfl_walsh3_200.jpg (http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=3226465#)Mike Fish, ESPN.com
Walsh says he could have broken a story about spying by the Patriots before the Jets' Eric Mangini did.


Asked Friday at his Super Bowl news conference about the New York Times story that indicated Specter's interest and identified Walsh as a person who might have inside knowledge about the Patriots' operations, Belichick said, "It's a league matter. I don't know anything about it." Despite suggestions that he could be a player in expanding the Spygate probe, Walsh repeatedly has refused to provide ESPN.com with any evidence of wrongdoing by the Patriots. He also has refused to confirm that he has tapes in his possession. Walsh said he is fearful of possible legal action against him by either the league or Patriots if he details what he knows. He refused to provide evidence of potential wrongdoing unless ESPN agreed to pay his legal fees related to his involvement in the story, as well as an indemnification agreement that would cover any damages found against him in court. ESPN denied his requests. On Friday, Walsh told ESPN he is uncertain whether he would voluntarily meet with a Senate committee, if asked. Previously, however, he expressed a willingness to tell league officials what he knows if they should call.

"I wouldn't lie to them about anything, and especially because I don't know what they have," Walsh said. "I don't know what evidence they have. So there is no reason for me to lie to anybody, anyways. It is one thing for me to say, 'Hey, look, just not gonna talk about it.' It is not like a felony or crime or something where I got to go on a stand in court and swear on a Bible or something. It is the kind of thing where for me, personally, it could potentially do more harm to talk about it than not talk about it. "But if the league contacted me and said, 'Did you do this? Did you do that? …' Maybe they have evidence I did, so I am not going to say, 'No, I didn't.'"


Like others trying to break into the NFL, Walsh came to the Patriots fresh out of college with little experience and a world of ambition. He graduated from Springfield College, class of 1998, with a degree in sports management. He didn't play college football; and though he claims to have spent parts of two seasons on the golf team, the college's sports information office has no record of him in its files. He began his time with the NFL by working on the Patriots' game-day press box staff during his college years.

Those connections led Walsh to an internship in the franchise's public relations department during the first semester of his senior year at Springfield. In an effort to get ahead with the team, Walsh told ESPN.com, he offered to help out in the scouting department, which was then headed by Bobby Grier, after his day shift in PR ended. Walsh found himself without a full-time job after graduation. He was working as a lifeguard on Cape Cod when the Patriots called just days before the start of camp and offered him a job as a video assistant, even though he had no expertise or training in that area. In the winter of 2002-03, Walsh said he was fired by Patriots vice president for player personnel Scott Pioli, and then spent a year on the video staff of the Cologne Centurions in now-defunct NFL Europe.

Walsh says he was frustrated with the monotony of the scouting job in New England -- he focused on the few football-playing colleges in western New York -- and that may have been a factor in his dismissal. He suggested it likely got back to the Patriots that he had made overtures about video jobs with other teams. He eventually landed a series of assistant golf pro jobs at private clubs in New England and Arizona. He can be found these days on the staff at the Ka'anapali Golf Resort in Lahaina, Hawaii, a 36-hole layout that caters to tourists visiting the high-end hotels and resort condos that line the long stretch of beach overlooking the Pacific Ocean. As he spoke with ESPN.com on a recent morning, he strode around the course confidently, talking up guests between an occasional golf lesson.

Walsh described himself as a guy who makes friends easily, and who is adroit at working deals. When he worked video for the Patriots, he said, he often finagled a round of golf at top course in exchange for game tickets. After he left the Patriots, he hooked up with a high school friend who worked security for his favorite group, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, and followed the band on tour over 27 stops, sharing drink and food backstage with band members by night, and playing golf by day. His air of confidence, though, came and went as he chatted about whether he wants to involve himself in Spygate. He has a young wife who is a physical therapist, and an 8-month-old son. He has family back in New England who, he said, could be in harm's way if he damages the Patriots with any information he might disclose. Even in Hawaii, he remains a New England season-ticket holder. And he said he worries about how he might be perceived by future employers if he blows the whistle on the Patriots. And he wondered aloud what might be in it for him if he does. He said he fears the potential wrath of the Patriots, and their ability to tie him in up in court for an extended period of time.


Although he stopped short of saying he has actual video evidence, he suggested he does; and so raised the possibility that it might be viewed as stolen property. He mentioned a confidentiality agreement he signed with the club, though he's not sure how that might factor into what he has to say. "So whether that still covers me talking about things that we did when I was there or not, I'm not completely sure," Walsh said. "But if it doesn't -- if the worst they do is get pissed off that I am coming out talking to national media about all these things that I know that they have done and what not, and they just decide to pull my season tickets -- well, OK. At the end of the day, what did I get out of it? I lost my season tickets." At one point, when the discussion turned to potential evidence, he said, "I'd use it if they came after me. The last thing I need is for people to make a case against me." During an afternoon tour of the golf course where he works, Walsh stopped and pointed out Black Rock, a cliff where a nightly ritual features a lone figure lifting a torch to salute the sky before plunging into the dark waters, home to the occasional small shark. He used that scene as an analogy to the risk he'd face coming forward with his story.

"That guy is taking a chance jumping into shark-infested waters," Walsh said, motioning toward the cliff. "There'd be nothing to come out of it for me. Be a helluva risk." He said he does not feel an ethical urge to do what some might perceive as the right thing, to help set the record straight -- either by exposing the Patriots or by depicting them as simply doing what every other team does. "I'll be honest with you: I can't really be guilted into anything," he said. "Maybe after this whole thing, you don't think I have a conscience because of the people I was exposed to and what they had me doing. "Really, I just [have] no incentive to really talk to anybody, no reason to do it. For me, personally, I haven't really been able to see the gain in doing it."

But now the Senate Judiciary Committee knows about him. And perhaps the incentive will come in the form of a subpoena from Specter's committee. Mike Fish is an investigative reporter for ESPN.com. He can be reached at michaeljfish@gmail.com. Ben Houser, a feature producer for ESPN's "Outside the Lines," and ESPN.com's Gregg Easterbrook also contributed to this report.

Sollozzo
02-02-2008, 09:41 PM
Thanks, MS

What about what Hines Ward said earlier this year. He said he felt that Patriots knew their signals in the 2001-02 AFC championship game. There's just too much out there for there not to be something to this.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/20748384/

Lord Helmet
02-02-2008, 09:41 PM
The Patriots didn't have to do it, so no big deal.

Trader Joe
02-02-2008, 10:33 PM
Ruh-roh.

heywoode
02-02-2008, 11:30 PM
I'm not sure about anything one way or the other, but it's not looking very good for the Pats.

The biggest thing that sticks in my mind is that the taping/spying story broke at the start of this season. You know, the season that is UNPRECEDENTED for the Patriots. Undefeated, most TD's thrown, most TD's caught, most points scored, most, most, most.....

It just seems awfully easy to connect the never-happened-before caught in the act and the never-happened-before absolute dominance over an entire schedule.

Part of me wants to be able to admire such greatness, but not if it came illicitly. The other part of me wants the franchise to burn to the ground.

Lord Helmet
02-02-2008, 11:42 PM
I'm not sure about anything one way or the other, but it's not looking very good for the Pats.

The biggest thing that sticks in my mind is that the taping/spying story broke at the start of this season. You know, the season that is UNPRECEDENTED for the Patriots. Undefeated, most TD's thrown, most TD's caught, most points scored, most, most, most.....

It just seems awfully easy to connect the never-happened-before caught in the act and the never-happened-before absolute dominance over an entire schedule.

Part of me wants to be able to admire such greatness, but not if it came illicitly. The other part of me wants the franchise to burn to the ground.
Why is that? Yeah, more people may not like them, but many didn't before. It isn't like they could get into trouble for this.

heywoode
02-02-2008, 11:48 PM
Why is that? Yeah, more people may not like them, but many didn't before. It isn't like they could get into trouble for this.

Yeah, and nobody can do anything to Barry Bonds for taking steroids....

Don't underestimate what can happen in the future. It all depends on what comes out and can be proven. Any time Congress gets involved, ANYTHING is possible.

Lord Helmet
02-02-2008, 11:51 PM
Yeah, and nobody can do anything to Barry Bonds for taking steroids....

Don't underestimate what can happen in the future. It all depends on what comes out and can be proven. Any time Congress gets involved, ANYTHING is possible.
Yeah, but I seriously doubt Congress gets involved......

heywoode
02-02-2008, 11:54 PM
Yeah, but I seriously doubt Congress gets involved......

From an article quoted in a previous post in this very thread:

If Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pa., the top Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, is serious about calling a hearing to delve into the issue -- particularly the questions of why the NFL hastily destroyed all evidence, including tapes handed over by the Patriots, and what other as-yet-undisclosed material might be out there -- perhaps one of his first calls should be to Walsh, who in conversations with ESPN.com suggested he has information that could be damaging to both the league and the Patriots. In a New York Times story on Friday and again at a news conference later in the day, Specter expressed frustration with a lack of response from the NFL to his Nov. 15 letter inquiring about the league's investigation. He said NFL commissioner Roger Goodell would eventually be called before the committee to address, among other things, the destruction of the tapes.

Lord Helmet
02-03-2008, 12:01 AM
From an article quoted in a previous post in this very thread:

If Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pa., the top Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, is serious about calling a hearing to delve into the issue -- particularly the questions of why the NFL hastily destroyed all evidence, including tapes handed over by the Patriots, and what other as-yet-undisclosed material might be out there -- perhaps one of his first calls should be to Walsh, who in conversations with ESPN.com suggested he has information that could be damaging to both the league and the Patriots. In a New York Times story on Friday and again at a news conference later in the day, Specter expressed frustration with a lack of response from the NFL to his Nov. 15 letter inquiring about the league's investigation. He said NFL commissioner Roger Goodell would eventually be called before the committee to address, among other things, the destruction of the tapes.
Well I only read the first article, so there is my problem.

McClintic Sphere
02-03-2008, 12:06 AM
I would say that if they had an employee sneak into the Ram's final SB practice and videotape the entire thing, in a game they won by 3 points, they definitely deserve a whole bunch of asterisks.**************************************** ****

BoomBaby31
02-03-2008, 12:18 AM
Goodell might as well be a member of the Patriot's PR department.

You just know 99% of these players past their prime that "rejuventated themselves" with the Patsies, are mainlining the HGH as well.

Seau hasn't missed a practice all year! That's like the first time in 10 years. He's one of my favs and not accusing him of anything but........

Sollozzo
02-03-2008, 12:20 AM
I would say that if they had an employee sneak into the Ram's final SB practice and videotape the entire thing, in a game they won by 3 points, they definitely deserve a whole bunch of asterisks.**************************************** ****

Agreed, and if this is indeed true(i'm not jumping to judgements just yet), then one is either a Pats fan or is just plain nieve if they think this was isolated to SB 36 and the incident this year. This is looking like it might have been a trend for the Pats for the past 7 seasons.

SoupIsGood
02-03-2008, 01:47 AM
Goodell might as well be a member of the Patriot's PR department.



Pretty much. It's pretty pathetic.

We might have only one SB victory (compared to the Pats' 3-maybe-4), but it feels nice to know we'll never see sentences like this attached to our win: "'There was no indication that it benefited them in any of the Super Bowl victories,' he said."

Pats fan can say what they want, but IMO your team loses the benefit of a doubt once they get caught cheating. The Pats are great, but they likely weren't playing by the rules for a lot of that greatness. :thumbsdow

Kind of sucks, because 19-0 is going to be a really historic thing years from now, something it'd be neat to look back on and be all nostalgic about. But I just can't bring myself to like these Pats.

Bball
02-03-2008, 02:39 AM
If you taped the Rams' practice and then used it to prepare for them in the SB all those years ago, why would you KEEP the tapes all these years? Why would you even keep them past the kickoff of the game?

And if you did keep them, would you keep them with all your other gametapes or would the HC take them home or to a private warehouse?

If I was the NFL I couldn't be satisfied the matter was closed just because the Pats didn't turn those tapes over....

-Bball

heywoode
02-03-2008, 02:58 AM
If you taped the Rams' practice and then used it to prepare for them in the SB all those years ago, why would you KEEP the tapes all these years? Why would you even keep them past the kickoff of the game?

And if you did keep them, would you keep them with all your other gametapes or would the HC take them home or to a private warehouse?

If I was the NFL I couldn't be satisfied the matter was closed just because the Pats didn't turn those tapes over....

-Bball

That is what bothered me from the start of all this. I realize there is certainly information that we, the public, do not know about this subject. Taking that into account, I can't come up with a scenario where the NFL would behave the way it did. It would be like the police serving a warrant for theft to someone at their home. The person answers the door, the police state their business and ask if the thief has any stolen property. He says, "Yes, just this hammer and this five dollar bill." The police take his word for it, don't search the house, don't investigate any further, don't talk to any of his friends/family, destroy the hammer and money, and fine him $100 and let him go on his way.

It just doesn't happen like that. Probable cause would allow them to search every inch of his person, his home, his car, any other property he had. They would interview his family and friends/known accomplices and ask about his behavior; has he had extra cash, does he have a lot of expensive stuff that nobody knows where it came from, etc. etc. etc.....I further realize that the "investigation" of the Patriots by the NFL was not a criminal case and the rules are certainly different, but the basic investigatory procedures would be (or should be) very similar. Maybe they don't have the power or right to search the private property of the Patriots? Maybe they don't have the ability to do anything other than ask if they cheated any further, and all they can do is accept the answer given?

You just don't take the word of a known cheater/liar and then destroy the evidence you DO recover. I also say the scope of your investigation couldn't possibly be so narrow that you don't at least consider the possibility of a wider pattern of dishonesty. There are plenty of other forms of cheating that could be done aside from videotaping defensive signals.

I don't want to start a posse looking to convict and sentence the Patriots without due process, but this whole situation stinks to high heaven of impropriety.

Shade
02-03-2008, 05:09 AM
I'm surprised that neither Moses nor pacertom have chimed in on this yet.

Anyway, I'll just drop a big, fat "I TOLD YOU SO" and be on my merry way.

Moses
02-03-2008, 11:43 AM
I'm surprised that neither Moses nor pacertom have chimed in on this yet.

Anyway, I'll just drop a big, fat "I TOLD YOU SO" and be on my merry way.
I've chosen not to chime in yet because I'll wait for more of the facts to come out. I do think the NFL mishandled post-spygate by destroying the tapes. If it turns out the Patriots did tape the Rams, I would be extremely disappointed because that was really when I started watching quite a bit of Pats football. Still, just because something is written does not make it true. The Boston Herald is hardly a valid source and I will take the NFL's word over the Boston Herald and an ex-employee any day of the week.

That's about all I've got to say about it. It's pretty clear that many, but not all, of you desperately want this to be true.

Shade
02-03-2008, 12:15 PM
I've chosen not to chime in yet because I'll wait for more of the facts to come out. I do think the NFL mishandled post-spygate by destroying the tapes. If it turns out the Patriots did tape the Rams, I would be extremely disappointed because that was really when I started watching quite a bit of Pats football. Still, just because something is written does not make it true. The Boston Herald is hardly a valid source and I will take the NFL's word over the Boston Herald and an ex-employee any day of the week.

That's about all I've got to say about it. It's pretty clear that many, but not all, of you desperately want this to be true.

I'm not going to believe a single word of what the NFL says because they're the ones who have the most to lose by this getting out. I suggested as much when Spygate broke earlier this year.

I completely understand wanting to wait for more info, and who knows, this may turn out to be untrue. But it looks really, really bad for the Pats and the NFL right now. Turns out that rather than being a genius, Belichick may have just been a career super-cheater. Couldn't happen to a bigger jerk. :-p

heywoode
02-03-2008, 01:02 PM
That's about all I've got to say about it. It's pretty clear that many, but not all, of you desperately want this to be true.


I'm half there and half not. If the Patriots and Belichick were more likeable, people wouldn't want to see them fall hard so badly.

When they constantly say they don't care what anyone thinks of them and constantly act like an a$$, the result of that is that people will want to see them fail rather than root for them. They just aren't very likeable to a lot of people and that is sad. If none of the cheating business is true, the kind of excellence they have achieved should be able to be celebrated without abrasive personalities getting in the way. That's why half of me wants it to be true.

I can understand how you feel, and I have no problem with ANY of the Patriot fans who post here. You guys are nice guys, and we share a common bond with the NBA at least :). I've tried to think of how I would feel if it were the Colts in this situation, and the best that I can come up with is that I would feel like throwing up. My beloved team finally reaches the pinnacle of their sport and then whispers of impropriety start coming out to question the accomplishments. I feel for you. That's why half of me doesn't want it to be true.

idioteque
02-03-2008, 02:11 PM
In reality, who the hell cares?

Dungy for the most part has traditionally had us unprepared for the playoffs, and we've gotten beat by the better team (whether it be NE or Pittsburgh, or San Diego).

I am a huge Colts fan, but I have trouble believing a business that is looking to make headlines and a cranky ex-employee over the NFL.

I doubt any of this was longreaching enough to cost the Colts a championship, mainly because of our traditional performances against teams not named New England in December and January.

So whatever. I know I'll get panned for this and I'll let ya'll have the last word.

Hicks
02-03-2008, 02:15 PM
Yeah, who cares if a team potentially cheated their way to a Super Bowl victory. Certainly not the St. Loius Rams. Who cares.

rexnom
02-03-2008, 02:19 PM
True or not, it's being handled very poorly by the NFL. Shame.

Young
02-03-2008, 02:47 PM
True or not, it's being handled very poorly by the NFL. Shame.

Yeah I really had some respect for Goodell but not after the way he has handled this whole spygate thing.

I don't think to much of Stern but he would handle things like this much better. I don't know if, when, the Pats have cheated but the way BB and Goodell speak on this matter makes me wonder. I would hope a team is not stupid enough to screw up 4 superbowls though.

Slick Pinkham
02-03-2008, 03:16 PM
I would say that if they had an employee sneak into the Ram's final SB practice and videotape the entire thing, in a game they won by 3 points, they definitely deserve a whole bunch of asterisks.**************************************** ****

I completely agree with you.

The only difference is that, unlike many (most?) here, I will wait to see EVIDENCE.

right now this is true:

Unnamed sources claim an unnamed person who might have been affilliated with the Patriots might have taped a practice, the taped that might have been viewed by the Patriots.

The Patriots and the NFL say the allegation is absolutely false.

If you hate the Patriots I can understand that you think that they are guilty until proven innocent, that where there's smoke there is fire, and we should all be up in arms and angry. This isn't a crime, but our anger in a small way should be like that we directed right away at those Duke LaCrosse rapists...

oops...

Sometimes where there's smoke, the smoke was just made up crap, and while lots of people rushed to believe there must be a fire, it wasn't there.

Sometimes the presumption of innocence is shown to be an important philosophy.

When someone says "My name is XYZ, I saw this and I did this. This is what I know". Then the story will warrant the attention it is getting. Right now it is tabloid National Equirer-type journalism at its worst.

Slick Pinkham
02-03-2008, 03:29 PM
Seau hasn't missed a practice all year! That's like the first time in 10 years. He's one of my favs and not accusing him of anything but........

So you're not accusing him of anything but you are accusing him of everything, right?

He missed much of the past 5 seasons with major injuries. Maybe he avoided wear and tear.

Or maybe we should just assume that guys like Jerry Rice, Darryl Green, Clay Matthews, Reggie Miller... who all played into or near their 40s, must be on HGH, right?

Is that what you are saying? geesh...

His career was on the decline due to repeated injuries. 5 years ago he was acquired by the Dolphins for a 5th round pick, and it's amazing to see him fill in at starter after Colvin went down.

great guy, too:

NFL Man of Year 1994
Started The Junior Seau Foundation in 1992
Funded two youth athletic fields in San Diego
elected to the National Boys and Girls Clubs Hall of Fame for his charity work with them
Founded the Scholars of Excellence Program, has awarded >200 scholarships to college-bound students



I don't think such a drive-by cheap shot is warranted.

Shade
02-03-2008, 03:47 PM
I'll just say one more thing, that I'm kinda surprised hasn't been brought up yet:

The Pats, who were heavy underdogs to the Rams, won Super Bowl XXXVI on February 3, 2002. The game was originally scheduled to be played on January 27, but was pushed back due to...9/11. Does anyone else remember people saying how it would be cool if a team called the PATRIOTS could win as a huge underdog in light of such a tragedy? I sure do. In fact, I was amongst that group.

Anyway, just a small reason the NFL may have wanted to keep this under wraps. It was a feel-good story for all of America at the time for the Pats to beat the Rams.

EDIT: I found this on Wikipedia:


Initially, the original logo for Super Bowl XXXVI was to have a style that reflected the host city. The original logo was distributed on some memorabilia items during 2001. However, after the 9/11 attacks, a new logo reflecting American pride was designed, featuring the shape of the 48 contiguous states.


The overall theme of the Super Bowl entertainment was a celebration of the freedom and spirit of America. The confetti was red, white, and blue. That color scheme would go on to be used for every Super Bowl from that point on.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/0/0d/SuperBowlXXXVI.png

heywoode
02-03-2008, 04:57 PM
I completely agree with you.

The only difference is that, unlike many (most?) here, I will wait to see EVIDENCE.

right now this is true:

Unnamed sources claim an unnamed person who might have been affilliated with the Patriots might have taped a practice, the taped that might have been viewed by the Patriots.

The Patriots and the NFL say the allegation is absolutely false.

If you hate the Patriots I can understand that you think that they are guilty until proven innocent, that where there's smoke there is fire, and we should all be up in arms and angry. This isn't a crime, but our anger in a small way should be like that we directed right away at those Duke LaCrosse rapists...

oops...

Sometimes where there's smoke, the smoke was just made up crap, and while lots of people rushed to believe there must be a fire, it wasn't there.

Sometimes the presumption of innocence is shown to be an important philosophy.

When someone says "My name is XYZ, I saw this and I did this. This is what I know". Then the story will warrant the attention it is getting. Right now it is tabloid National Equirer-type journalism at its worst.

I was skeptical from the beginning about the Duke case, and I don't think many people outside of the media and the local people screaming about it being a race issue were quick to condemn. I heard and read more skepticism than I ever did condemnation.

The problem with your analogy isn't that this issue isn't criminal and the Duke case was, it's that the story would have been different for the Duke boys if they had actually been BUSTED doing the same thing earlier in the year. THAT is the point that makes people rush to judge. If one or all of them had prior convictions for sexual assault under similar circumstances, the ability to give the benefit of the doubt would've been severely diminished.

Kinda hard to claim a presumption of innocence when the proof of GUILT has already been established.

Even after all of that, I'm willing to wait until there is evidence that they cheated further before condemning them. I'm not saying they should start stripping Super Bowl titles, but I'm not presuming that this is a case of tabloid journalism either. I have no illusions that this is a case of a disgruntled employee and the mean old tabloid press beating up on the poor innocent Patriots. That set of beliefs is just as flawed as rushing to convict.

Moses
02-03-2008, 05:10 PM
I'll just say one more thing, that I'm kinda surprised hasn't been brought up yet:

The Pats, who were heavy underdogs to the Rams, won Super Bowl XXXVI on February 3, 2002. The game was originally scheduled to be played on January 27, but was pushed back due to...9/11. Does anyone else remember people saying how it would be cool if a team called the PATRIOTS could win as a huge underdog in light of such a tragedy? I sure do. In fact, I was amongst that group.

Anyway, just a small reason the NFL may have wanted to keep this under wraps. It was a feel-good story for all of America at the time for the Pats to beat the Rams.

EDIT: I found this on Wikipedia:





http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/0/0d/SuperBowlXXXVI.png
I guess the NFL wanted the Saints to win after Katrina..oh wait, the Saints actually aren't as good as everyone thought. I don't believe in conspiracy theories when it comes to the NFL. Belichick has already been warned by Goodell that he will be suspended for a year if further evidence comes up regarding them recording other teams. I really think you are grasping for something here, and there just isn't anything there. The NFL has nothing to do with the Patriots beating the Rams. The allegations that they recorded their final walk through may..but until there is any evidence to prove this, then it's all just speculation. Note: If any valid proof surfaces about this, I will be the first to condemn the Patriots. It would be very disheartening as a fan.

Slick Pinkham
02-03-2008, 05:33 PM
I'll just say one more thing, that I'm kinda surprised hasn't been brought up yet:

The Pats, who were heavy underdogs to the Rams, won Super Bowl XXXVI on February 3, 2002. The game was originally scheduled to be played on January 27, but was pushed back due to...9/11.

Also due to 9/11, the entire event had stepped-up security. I remember stories about coaches and media members were being denied access to areas because they left their ID in the hotel or something like that, so they pulled a "Do you know who I am" scene to no avail.

It's kind of hard to believe that security would allow someone to be at practice who was not supposed to be there. Well, maybe they could have gotten in earlier legally and HID... but then...

It's kind of hard to believe that the RAMS would allow someone to be at practice who was not supposed to be there. Coaches have been paranoid about their practives being watched since way before the first Super Bowl was played. Retired coach Howard Schellenberger was interviewed a few days ago by a local paper and told how George Allen would get his coaches to watch opponents' practices with binoculars. Every coach has guys to check the whole arena for spies, so this story seems strange on first principles.

Moses
02-03-2008, 05:56 PM
It's kind of hard to believe that the RAMS would allow someone to be at practice who was not supposed to be there.
That's the first thing I thought of when I read the story. You don't simply just waltz in to a teams practice facility with a camcorder on the final freaking practice before the biggest freaking game of the year.

BoomBaby33
02-03-2008, 05:57 PM
Not to throw water on the fire, but did Vinateri cheat when he split the uprights for the winning kick?

Hey, I am far from being a Pats fan, but I find it funny that all of this has come up the week of the Super Bowl 42 - some 6 years later.

I think this has become more of a PR ploy for SB42. Either that, or some of the 1972 Miami Dolphins players are starting vicious rumors. Even Jaws doesnt think its a big deal, and as an NFL sportscaster, I think he is one of the best. Plus, he actually played the game. He knows the ropes.

Here again, I dislike the Patriots, but Im kind of rooting for them in a way, because its still tough for the actual players to go out there and make the plays on the field in the heat of the moment. I appreciate perfection, because isnt that what every team (no matter what sport), tries to achieve.

And we are witnessing it.

OTOH, Im also rooting for Peyton's little bro Eli. Do you think Peyton has given Eli any pointers as to what the Patriots will try to do? I think he probably has. Is that considered cheating?

Slick Pinkham
02-03-2008, 06:34 PM
If the 2001-2002 Super Bowl was won by taping a walk-through, Belichick should be fired and the trophy taken away.

I actually think that both would happen...

But serious allegations that deserve serious punishment require real evidence and not just unnamed sources and tabloid journalism

BoomBaby31
02-03-2008, 07:07 PM
So you're not accusing him of anything but you are accusing him of everything, right?

He missed much of the past 5 seasons with major injuries. Maybe he avoided wear and tear.

Or maybe we should just assume that guys like Jerry Rice, Darryl Green, Clay Matthews, Reggie Miller... who all played into or near their 40s, must be on HGH, right?

Is that what you are saying? geesh...

His career was on the decline due to repeated injuries. 5 years ago he was acquired by the Dolphins for a 5th round pick, and it's amazing to see him fill in at starter after Colvin went down.

great guy, too:

NFL Man of Year 1994
Started The Junior Seau Foundation in 1992
Funded two youth athletic fields in San Diego
elected to the National Boys and Girls Clubs Hall of Fame for his charity work with them
Founded the Scholars of Excellence Program, has awarded >200 scholarships to college-bound students



I don't think such a drive-by cheap shot is warranted.

Like I wrote "he is one of my favorites" and I'm not accusing but he has missed practice time like the last 10 years. Now he's around 40 and showing up feeling like a kid. You don't have to outline his achievements: Seau like I wrote is "one of my favorites" and I'm more of a team guy then a player guy.

Rice and Reggie sure weren't running faster, playing longer minutes, going to every single practice and they weren't pledged with injuries for the last 5 years either. However Bonds started smacking more HR's and Clemens fastball got faster then ever before when he reached 40. Anyway, I'm not trying to convict the guy... I"m just saying...
Every guy listed, excluding Bonds, are my favorite players ever. You could cap out this posting count with achievements and charity these players have done. Even if they did do any "banned substances" it wouldn't change my feelings, a about them.

Slick Pinkham
02-03-2008, 09:21 PM
Seau is much much slower and also a lot less powerful than he was at 28. Smartness is what is keeping him in there.

grace
02-04-2008, 12:41 AM
If the 2001-2002 Super Bowl was won by taping a walk-through, Belichick should be fired and the trophy taken away.


Too bad they didn't tape the warm ups before the game because they would have seen the exact route to Plax that won the game.

sweabs
02-04-2008, 12:59 AM
Wasn't so easy this time around.

Slick Pinkham
02-05-2008, 11:04 AM
I just found out that this is not the first time that Arlen Specter threatened the NFL with an investigation and used the antitrust exemption as his weapon.

His last cause: he thought the NFL was unfairly punishing Terrell Owens with a 4-game suspension a few years ago.

No joke!

This is the mindset of the Senator from Pennsylvania.


------------

Sen. Specter Defends Terrell Owens
By Associated Press

Tue Nov 29, 12:14 AM

PHILADELPHIA - Sen. Arlen Specter accused the National Football League and the Philadelphia Eagles of treating Terrell Owens unfairly and said he might refer the matter to the antitrust subcommittee of the Senate Judiciary Committee, which he chairs.

Specter said at a news conference Monday in Harrisburg it was "vindictive and inappropriate" for the league and the Eagles to forbid the all-pro wide receiver from playing and prevent other teams from talking to him.

"It's a restraint of trade for them to do that, and the thought crosses my mind, it might be a violation of antitrust laws," Specter said, though some other legal experts disagreed.

The Eagles suspended Owens on Nov. 5 for four games without pay for "conduct detrimental to the team", and deactivated him with pay on Sunday after the suspension ended.

Arbitrator Richard Bloch said last week the team's actions were supported by the labor agreement between the league and the NFL Players Association.

"The arbitrator's decision is consistent with our collective bargaining agreement, and it simply enforced the terms of the player's contract," Greg Aiello, an NFL spokesman, said Monday.

"To have an antitrust violation, you have to have a contract or conspiracy in restraint of trade," said Robert McCormick, a law professor at Michigan State University.

Matthew J. Mitten, director of the National Sports Law Institute at Marquette University, said, "We're in the labor arena, not antitrust."

Specter emphasized that he was "not a supporter of Terrell Owens."

"I am madder than hell at what he has done in ruining the Eagles' season," the Pennsylvania Republican said. "I think he's in flagrant breach of his contract and I believe the Eagles would be within their rights in not paying him another dime or perhaps even suing him for damages."

But Specter said, "I do not believe, personally, that it is appropriate to punish him (by forcing him to sit out the rest of the season). He's not committed a crime, he's committed a breach of contract. And what they're doing against him is vindictive."

___

Information from: The Philadelphia Inquirer:

http://www.comcast.net/sports/index.jsp?cat=SPORTS&fn=/2005/11/29/273105.html

Gyron
02-05-2008, 11:18 AM
Not letting TO play 4 games is an entirely different thing a team cheating and having an eeftect on the outcome of a game in which Millions of dollars were wagered, not to mention the financial impacts for the teams involved. The financial loss or gain from team apparel/memoribilia has to be HUGE $'s from a superbowl loss/win.

Slick Pinkham
02-05-2008, 12:44 PM
the point is, a lot of people say

"this must be serious if a senator wants to get involved"

when the fact is that he is a rabid fan who wanted the same level of involvement when he thought a player on his team was being unfairly treated for acting like a Ron Artest.

There may be something here, and the NFL will find out. They want to talk to the fired video guy. But we should not take Senator Specter's word on how serious the situation is.

He has cried "wolf" over nothing in the past.

idioteque
02-05-2008, 12:56 PM
Yeah, who cares if a team potentially cheated their way to a Super Bowl victory. Certainly not the St. Loius Rams. Who cares.

I am first and foremost a Colts fan and not an NFL fan.

From a league perspective, I can see why this is a big deal.

My first question on any NFL news is "how does this affect the balance of power between the Colts and the Patriots?" If it doesn't have any impact (in my perception) then I tend to just disregard it.

I guess that makes me somewhat provincial as a sports fan, but it is what it is.

King Tuts Tomb
02-05-2008, 12:59 PM
Close, PacerTom, but not really.

The TO example doesn't work because he never did investigate it. He was probably talking about sports with a reporter and thinking out loud about the situation. Nothing came of it.

In the Patriots case he's interviewing Goodell and possibly having hearings. If he decides Goodell is telling the truth and that's all there is to it, then the situations are similar.

But if it goes further then the two incidents have nothing in common except the two parties are employed by the same company.