By: Ian Logue
There never seems to be a shortage of drama these days in Foxboro, and if having Rodney Harrison suspended recently for admitting to using a banned substance (HGH) wasn’t bad enough, the team is apparently potentially being investigated again for “cheating”.
In what is a developing story, the New England Patriots are reportedly being investigated for stealing signs by using a sideline camera, recording the signs as they were being sent in by the New York Jets’ defensive coordinators. While this accusation has been made before, this time it appears to be gaining some legitimacy.
According to published reports a man who was said that a Patriots employee was escorted off the field on Sunday, with NFL security confiscating his video camera and its tape. Chris Mortenson of ESPN also reported that this is the same employee who was taken off the field during a Nov. 19th matchup against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau field which was apparently a similar incident last season.
The camera and that tape are now on their way to the league office to be reviewed by the competition committee.
This is something that would defy logic, considering how intelligent head coach Bill Belichick has always appeared to be. The first thing I did after reading this was to look for reports of it happening prior to last season, preferably around the time during which Mangini was still part of the Patriots coaching staff. I would have thought that Belichick would have known a former coach may have obviously been aware of this practice, since you would assume this information would have been shared with coaches so that they could use this information. Upon looking further John Tomase of the Boston Herald pointed out that last year former wide receivers coach Brian Daboll (now with the Jets as a QB’s coach) was on staff.
I mean come on, Belichick is a smart guy. It would be tough to believe he would have done it without realizing he’d get ratted out. But his reaction on WEEI Monday afternoon raised an eyebrow with me. Said Belichick, “It’s a league thing. Whatever the deal is, which I don’t even know the details of it, a lot of it, we’ll comply [with the league].” I would think that if this accusation held no merit, he would have vehemently denied it, which makes you wonder if it is indeed true.
Most of the television “experts” seem to be laughing it off, saying that even if it’s true it’s probably didn’t give them that much of an advantage. Many laugh at the possibility of “espionage”, rolling their eyes and downplaying such an incident. However, should New England be found guilty, it could involve a stiff penalty from the league which reportedly could include the loss of a draft pick. While that would be a tough penalty, having to deal with the fallout of another controversial incident involving some form of cheating would be a difficult pill to swallow as a fan. The next couple of days will be interesting, and here’s hoping there’s nothing on that tape to confirm these allegations.
JETS FANS HAVE NO CLASS
After running this site as long as we have, we’ve obviously gotten pretty use to seeing the amount of idiots from other teams who tend to darken the doorstep of our messageboard from time to time. Typically this trend is the minority and not the majority, but Sunday’s travesty against Chad Pennington just made me lose complete respect for Jets fans. While trying to get his team back into the game, Pennington hobbled off the field after injuring his ankle against New England. We then watched the entire Jets faithful cheer Kellen Clemens onto the field.
I just shook my head.
How they can do that to a guy who came right back in on the next series and led his team to a scoring drive, not to mention the fact that he threw two touchdown passes and misfired on only 5 attempts on Sunday, just defies logic. Any intelligent fan could see that it was New York’s defense that cost them the game, not Pennington. Apparently either everyone in that stadium was a Patriots fan cheering the fact Pennington got knocked out, or they’re all complete idiots. I’m going with the latter.
MONDAY NIGHT OBSERVATION
I watched the last few minutes of the match-up between the Cincinnati Bengals and Baltimore Ravens Monday night, and I have to say that it’s amazing how quickly a potential QB controversy can begin and end in a matter of minutes.
While apparently suffering a groin injury during the team’s last offensive series, Ravens quarterback Steve McNair took himself out with his team down 27-20 with less than four minutes left in the game. Kyle Boller came in to try and finish out the contest, and watched victory along with a potential to earn a case to start evaporate in a matter of minutes.
It all started when Boller marched them down the field and threw a touchdown pass on 4th down to Todd Heap in the back of the endzone which would have tied the game. Unfortunately it was called back on an offensive pass interference penalty. Replays showed that the call was obviously wrong and if anything it was a defensive pass interference penalty. Nevertheless the penalty obviously stood.
After being backed up 10-yards Boller attempted yet another pass, and this time defensive pass intereference was called, giving them 1st and goal at the 6-yard line. But two plays later Boller was intercepted after calling on Heap again, but the tight end couldn’t hold on and it ended up in the hands of the Bengals defense.
From hero back to zero in a matter of minutes….pretty unreal.
SITE NEWS – GROGAN’S GRADE; CHRISTOPHER PRICE’S BLOG
Former Patriots quarterback Steve Grogan is back for yet another season with “Grogan’s Grade”, a weekly feature breaking down each contest. The first one for this season ran this morning, breaking down Sunday’s win over New York. If you haven’t seen it, make sure you check it out.
The same goes for Christopher Price, who has graciously joined us again this season with a blog here at PatsFans.com. Price continues to provide terrific insight and information from inside Gillette Stadium, and we’re excited to have him with us. His blog is a must read for Patriots fans and something you should add to your daily list of things to check out.