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Belichick said he had "misinterpreted" NFL rules - true or BS?

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  1. robinsandiego

    robinsandiego Rookie

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    Belichick said he had "misinterpreted NFL rules"

    is this true or did he know all along what he was doing?

    and if its true he had "misinterpreted" the rules as stated, then that implies
    he felt that at the time aiming the camera was permitted.
    and that he was surprised to find out that it was not allowed.

    am i understanding his position correctly?
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2007
  2. maverick4

    maverick4 Banned

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    Re: Belichick said he had misinterpreted NFL rules-true or bs?

    The GREAT LIE perpetuated by the media is that he STOLE signals and CHEATED.

    People need to be charged with slander if it turns out Belichick used those tapes for post-game analysis, like he said in his statement.
  3. NEPat

    NEPat Rookie

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    Re: Belichick said he had misinterpreted NFL rules-true or bs?

    He knew what he was doing. The team was warned last year. They aren't stupid.
  4. BelichickFan

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    #24 Jersey

    Re: Belichick said he had "misinterpreted" NFL rules-true or bs?

    Both. I think he chose to misinterpret. I have no doubt he knew the intent but I can see legitimate loopholes in the rules that you can choose to walk through if you want to.
  5. SaCaCh

    SaCaCh Rookie

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    Re: Belichick said he had misinterpreted NFL rules-true or bs?

    My understanding is this. He thought if he filmed the signals but did not use that video or have access to it during the game then it was fine, that it was not different then a coaches tape. If you parsed the rules you could kinda assume that, but the clarification supposedly sent out later was suppose to point out no video taping at all except for the designated areas.
  6. BelichickFan

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    #24 Jersey

    Re: Belichick said he had misinterpreted NFL rules-true or bs?

    It's AMAZING how many people think that he cheated. Some don't but of the ones I've talked to or heard on the radio the vast majority just don't understand. It's almost embarrassing for people to be this stupid.
  7. maverick4

    maverick4 Banned

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    Re: Belichick said he had "misinterpreted" NFL rules-true or bs?

    QUESTION: were there ever rumors that the Colts stole our defensive signals during last year's AFC CG? They made a huge comeback in the 2nd half, remember?

    Maybe Bill purposely raised the issue of call stealing to stop the Colts this year. But miscalculated in how bad the penalty would be.
  8. patsfan13

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    Re: Belichick said he had "misinterpreted" NFL rules-true or bs?

    Here is what Goodell said:


    He said BB is guilty of avoiding the rule. Apparently he had a loophole and Goodell wouldn't allow BB to just abide by the letter of the law. It's his decision driven by the firestorm in the media.

    Only thing for the Pats to do now is win the SB.
  9. everlong

    everlong Rookie

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    #12 Jersey

    Re: Belichick said he had "misinterpreted" NFL rules-true or bs?

    We have bingo.
  10. The Gr8est

    The Gr8est Rookie

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    Re: Belichick said he had misinterpreted NFL rules-true or bs?

    As you pointed out earlier, BB knew he wasn't acting in the spirit of the law, but was trying to use a possible loophole to get around it.

    Likewise, the loud condemners know BB wasn't really cheating, but their envy and hate consumes them and they aren't going to give up this chance to get their pound of flesh.

    BB's successes is their team's failures, and they are out for revenge, not justice.

    This goes for fans, players, and media all.
  11. robinsandiego

    robinsandiego Rookie

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    Re: Belichick said he had "misinterpreted" NFL rules-true or bs?

    and what is the loop hole?

    and if there was a loophole why not stand by your position- and make a
    public statement such as "rule 3,.3.3 states that cameras may be ......and
    that is what we did"

    why does does a head coach of a team with 3 rings bring his owner, team
    and fans down with him by acting like someone who has cheated and not taking a stronger position to himeself
    and the owners?
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2007
  12. patsfan13

    patsfan13 Hall of Fame Poster PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Re: Belichick said he had "misinterpreted" NFL rules-true or bs?


    Why should BB get into ti with Goodell given the sh*tstorm in the media?

    Why didn't Goodell say they broke the rule and cheated rather than parsing?


    BB didn't said he felt what he did was legal, Goodell ruled other wise and he accepted that and is moving on.
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2007
  13. dtbrks

    dtbrks Rookie

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    Re: Belichick said he had "misinterpreted" NFL rules-true or bs?

    Not that it matters now, because it's over and done, but i believe him.
  14. robinsandiego

    robinsandiego Rookie

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    Re: Belichick said he had "misinterpreted" NFL rules-true or bs?

    well because it is a big deal
    its one thing if a player does something wrong but a coach should
    be setting the standard for the team, the last person you want to be labeled
    a "cheater" is the coach.

    if he could show it was a honest mistake that anyone could have made,
    why come down on him with a $500,000 fine?
    I get the feeling his defense argument may have been pretty weak.

    it would be interesting to know what it was?

    anyone know?
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2007
  15. patsfan13

    patsfan13 Hall of Fame Poster PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Re: Belichick said he had "misinterpreted" NFL rules-true or bs?

    It wasn't a mistake, BB read the rulebook and felt their taping procedure was within the letter of the law. Mangini took a shot, leaked it to the media to deflect attention from the miserable performance of his team. The media who hates BB because he doesn't kiss up to them had an opportunity fior payback. So it is what it is. Now the Pats can shut up the rest of the league by winning the SB IMO they will.
  16. The-Beast

    The-Beast Rookie

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    Re: Belichick said he had "misinterpreted" NFL rules-true or bs?

    Goodell is a lawyer and a smart man.

    You can't tie the word cheat to a team that just won 3 superbowls and will be competing for one again. Avoid can be construed as breaking. Breaking the rules in a competition is cheating.

    His lawyered up statement ends the issue. And good riddance, now we can get back to football.
  17. AzPatsFan

    AzPatsFan Rookie

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    Re: Belichick said he had "misinterpreted" NFL rules-true or bs?

    If you read the rules there is no rule, nor even any rule close, to outlawing "stealing sign".

    Indeed the Patriots complained about a technique the Dolphins under Saban were doing. They put microphones and communicated the audibles that Brady was calling at the line of scrimmage last year, to their coaches via radio or recording devices, presumably for analysis.

    The commissioner officially said there was no problem doing so. So "sign stealing" is not forbidden in football any more than in MLB, where it is a hallowed art.

    Nor is it even with a technical violation in that only QBs are allowed to have radio equipment and the "miked" defensive players, like Jason Taylor obviously had a broadcast radio, (but unknown if it had a receive capability as that would have violated the coach to player communication
    rule.)

    There is a prohibition on taping/filming except in certain designated areas. but that prohibition is qualified by the statement for use "in the game".

    That prohibition in NOT in the rulebook. It is in a companion document that describes other things necessary to provide for playing a game, like proper police security, need for badges, to access the field; areas assigned for various sideline camera men to use, et cetera. Uniforms to be worn by various new media, yada, yada, yada.

    No prohibition on taping /filming from anywhere then, if the information taped, is not analyzed or used "in the game", as the rule does indeed qualify, its prohibition on taping/filming. Then there is NO DIFFERENCE from what the Dolphins were cleared by the commissioner's office last off season. At most a technical violation, but likely less severe since the prohibition is not in the rulebook, unlike the radio prohibition which is in the rule book, at most.

    There was no provision to do that analysis "in the game" use either; as the Commissioner conceded, in his press statement. There was no real-time instant communication link in the system, to communicate with a knowledgeable coach. The camera man is not a coach, never played football in either the NFL or a major college system. He is by background unsuitable to analyze any signs. His background is as a pure video technician, (probably on purpose).

    The tape info would have to be broken down and analyzed by a knowledgeable football professional post game, and so even more evidence it could not be used except maybe somehow if analyzed at half time. It was probably meant as a companion to the analysis of game film, post game, which is obviously allowed and the NFL itself arranges the trades of Coaches tape between teams each week.

    Now Belichick did not try to hide what he was doing. The camera man did not not slink around in an disguise, donning a network or local TV cameraman identification. He did have Identification, and a proper field pass identifying him. The Patriots thought they what they were doing was either completely alright, or at most subject to "interpretation".

    If there is anything that Belichick did wrong, is to read the rule carefully; and see what it says, rather than what it meant to say, but didn't actually say.

    Too smart by half, for an intimidated Commissioner, in awe of the wrath of NYC media in a feeding frenzy. [​IMG]


    If Bob Kraft were Al Davis he would go to court and he would win. The Law is what the Law says, not what it meant to say. But I don't think he will, as that would undermine Commissioner Goodell. But I wouldn't invest in Mangini's career, though...
  18. BrianPat

    BrianPat Rookie

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    Re: Belichick said he had "misinterpreted" NFL rules-true or bs?


    I think he was using the information the way he says he was, but he knew there was a rule against the camera and that he would be breaking that rule. I think he figured he could use some smoke and create a gray area in the rule, forgetting, Goodell was a lawyer, hence the memo, hence the smack upside the head !
  19. shakadave

    shakadave Rookie

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    Re: Belichick said he had misinterpreted NFL rules-true or bs?

    This is exactly what I think, too.

    Another angle could be that BB realized many teams have video crews out there (for other reasons, filming other legitimate things) and reasoned, "How the heck can you allow video crews out there, but just not for taping coaches? How the heck do you, the NFL, know what those crews are filming? As long as you allow all these video crews out there, you cannot hope to enforce your no-filming-coaches rule. Therefore, I will film coaches with my video crew." Then Goodell said, "Yeah, whatever, I'm still gonna kick you in the gut." I think that this theory addresses the confusion about why BB would film so openly.
  20. BelichickFan

    BelichickFan B.O. = Fugazi PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #24 Jersey

    Re: Belichick said he had misinterpreted NFL rules-true or bs?

    The rules says you can't tape stuff if it "might" help you in the game.

    What does "might" mean ? Does it mean it has the potential to if you choose to use it ? If so Goodell is correct. But by this defiinition someone could say "BelichickFan might kill himself". Well, sure, by the strict definition of "might", I might. But there's no chance in hell I will so the statement is actually false.

    Therein likes the interpretation issue.
  21. Metaphors

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    Re: Belichick said he had "misinterpreted" NFL rules-true or bs?

    I actually think this situation is a culmination of frustration built up over the last couple of years. Take a look at the situation in total and it kinda makes sense.

    The Background
    Belichick is a coach in the traditional sense...relying on teaching, preparation and intelligence to put his players in the best position to win. He has the dedication and work ethic, but he needs to control information to maximize his chances of winning.

    The Environment
    The policies of the NFL work exactly counter to Belichick's nature: they want coaches (including assistants) and players to be accessible to the media and they want to have a level playing field on the amount and type of information teams can gather.

    The no video policy is especially galling to him. Belichick wants as much information as possible from every game (including games of upcoming opponents) to use as material for preparation. He doesn't have the time or inclination to do film study during the game or at halftime...and he certainly wouldn't trust an underling to make gameplan changes with video he hasn't seen. So the NFL is telling him that he has to have limited information (same as his opponents) for future preparation...even though he is not doing anything sneaky or underhanded to get the information.

    As a quick aside, there is more to gather about watching opposing coaches besides "stealing signs". Are they slow to get signals in? Maybe we should go no-huddle. Do they change signals after we show our offensive formation? Maybe we should do a quick shift before the snap. And so on. All perfectly legitimate observations that he can't make during the game and broadcasts won't show him later. Now back to my ramblings...

    The Hypocrisy
    So Belichick is already frustrated that the league policies are aligned against him. Now he sees other organizations pulling underhanded tactics (Milloy/Branch tampering, players secretly wired for sound, overheated domes, etc.) and the league ignores it or calls it "gamesmanship"...while he gets crap for trying to gather information. Now Belichick is frustrated and his ego makes him ripe for picking a fight with the league. In fact, the memo sent out days before the game may have sent him over the edge.

    The Miscalculations
    Belichick knew sending out a camera guy would be a violation of a policy he didn't agree with, but he was going to make the league either stop him (and stop the other teams' "gamesmanship" as well) or let him coach the way he wants. That is all fine and dandy except he may 3 miscalculations:
    1. NFL security took the camera/tape. I imagine he expected the camera guy to get ejected from the game at worst.
    2. Goodell leaked information to the media. This allowed the question of league integrity to become front page news. Belichick has too much respect for the game, the Patriots and Robert Kraft to want that to happen.
    3. The punishment involved a first round pick. Draft picks are gold to Belichick. The worst he could have expected as punishment would have been a 3rd (Denver's punishment for salary cap violations). The combination of Goodell's temperment, the environment in sports overall and the media frenzy combined to result in a penalty that has to be killing Belichick right now.

    The Bottom Line
    This incident was a "perfect storm" of past events, silly policies, big egos, a league's image problem and a lazy, sensationalizing media. Everyone (except the media) lost in this affair. The only positive that can be hoped for is that all of the "gamesmanship" that drove Belichick to a bad place will stop or be punished with equal severity. If not, this whole mess would have been for nothing.
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2007
  22. Remix 6

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    like BB said. IT DOESNT MATTER :)
  23. emoney_33

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    Re: Belichick said he had "misinterpreted" NFL rules-true or bs?



    This is one of, if not THE, most sensible post I've read about this whole issue. And definitely the only one involving BB knowingly breaking the rule that makes sense. Great post, and there is a real good chance you could be spot on here.


    The whole cheating, sign stealing, unfair advantage crap that is all over the place is what aggrivates me the most about this. The penalty was definitely steep, but Goodell was sort of backed into a corner. He had to come down hard on someone that violated a rule that was "clarified" 3 days prior, as well as having to come down hard after all the backlash and out of control spin on the issue. I dont have a huge problem with the punishment, I acknowledge BB broke a rule, but I am sick of hearing all the "cheating", "illegal sign stealing to get an advantage" crap that many keep spewing.


    Again, great post.
  24. emoney_33

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    Re: Belichick said he had "misinterpreted" NFL rules-true or bs?


    Your opinion on what he should have done or how he should have acted is meaningless. What you suggest BB to do is not consistent with his personality. Watching BB for a while, what would give you the impression that he would ever do something like make a public statement about the exact rule and wording, which would just get into a debate about the wording etc..?

    He broke a rule, apologized, we move on. I'll bet not one of his players are upset with him.
  25. mgteich

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    Re: Belichick said he had "misinterpreted" NFL rules-true or bs?

    A week ago, I would say that Belichick was too smart to make such miscalcualtions, but this post does show considerable insight into what might have happened.

  26. patsfan13

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    Re: Belichick said he had "misinterpreted" NFL rules-true or bs?

    BB made his case to the commish, the commish ruled against BB & the Pats.

    He could make a big stink trying to 'prove' he is right. The media would have a field day cruxifying BB.

    The result? A distracted team. BB is about winning football games not winning unwinnable arguments. He is cutting his losses and moving on.

    HE will use this situation to motivate his team as the rest of the NFL will see this season.
  27. emoney_33

    emoney_33 Rookie

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    I guess you just only hear what you want. The pats have already been defended on this issue by numerous players, coaches, former players and former coaches.

    BB said he misinterpreted the rule and you accuse him of lying. By doing that you are trying to convince us that you are a mind reader and know exactly what belichick thinks. READ THE RULE EXACTLY, at the end it says "...in a game". The rule can EASILY be interpreted to mean that you cannot use video cameras to gather information to be used in the game. But the commish's interpretation is all that matters. Move on, get lost, try not be so jealous of the pats
  28. patsfan13

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    Mangini had the motive. THe focus on BB has kept him from having to account for the horrible performance of his team in a game they had 6 months to prepare for.

    He couldn't predict the magnitude ensuing media firestorm however.
  29. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Why did Belichick feel driven to tape the signals of the pathetic jets?
  30. patsfan13

    patsfan13 Hall of Fame Poster PatsFans.com Supporter

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    We will never know, since I presume the Pats will no longer tape it doesn't matter.
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