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How is reading signs "cheating"?

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by JJDChE, Sep 13, 2007.

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  1. JJDChE

    JJDChE Rookie

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    First of all, let's get this "stealing" signs crap out of the way. No one is "stealing" anything, the players and coaches are giving the signs out in open. There is no, nor has there ever been, any rule about not watching the other team's signs.

    Now, the big issue. Everyone is throwing around the big C-word, as if the Patriots were caught in the Jets locker room putting sedatives in their water supply. This is crazy, part of playing the game of football is trying to figure out what the other team will do before they do it. It's not just blocking and tackling. It has been like this since day 1. Any information you can gather on the field is fair game.

    I can see why the league has a problem bringing video equipment into the equation (I should say additional video equipment, since the teams are allowed to gather information on the other teams calls from sanctioned videos). I don't have any problems with punishment related to this, it's a league violation.

    That said, I just don't see any reason why reading the other teams signs should be looked on in a negative light. The reason there are elaborate play calls is to try to conceal from the other team what you are doing because part of the objective of the game is for the opponent to figure out what you're doing.

    The more I think about it, the more I am confused about the prevalent idea that reading another teams signs is some clandestine activity. It's an integral, and I think, perfectly legitimate part of the game of football.

    I think a lot of the backlash (besides the fact that people want to bring the Patriots down, and that the media are attention whores) is that the average fan doesn't get on the field and hear what goes on. Every time an offensive or defensive unit comes off the field, part of what they are discussing is what the other team is trying to do and what calls they are making and how they can recognize those calls, what hand signals they are using, etc. It's not just, "hey, we need to execute this play better." This isn't something teams are trying to hide...THIS IS PART OF FOOTBALL!

    That's the reason why many players and coaches being interviewed are blowing it off, to them that's what you are supposed to do.


    Seriously, the more I think about this, the more I realize how insanely overblown the reactions are. I'm guilty myself of being swayed by the overwhelming negative media reaction. What should have been apparent immediately, actually took me two days to figure because I've been constantly being bombarded with the media allegations of cheating. Looking at what the Patriots actually did within the context of the game I see how innocuous it is now.


    In my opinion, what this amounts to is the Patriots being caught using an unsanctioned way to gather information that everyone else is gathering anyway. It's a clear cut case of violating an equipment rule and should be punished as such. I can't believe I'm agreeing with Sean Salisbury, but 50K and move on really sounds right to me.
  2. ELOrocks17

    ELOrocks17 Guest

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    I read on the Chargers messageboard that NE should forefit the game and give the win to the Jets. First off, that is the stupidist thing i ever heard. Secondly, the cameraman left the field with the alleged videotape before halftime and was NEVER GIVEN TO BILICHICK to use. Thirdly, coaches cover thier faces with thier play sheet to prevent people from seeing what they are saying, how is a videotape showing thier faces covered going to help? Forth, If we were "Cheating" all along, why in the f*ck would we let Iny beat us twice last year? Anything else anyone wants to add?
  3. DisgruntledTunaFan

    DisgruntledTunaFan Rookie

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    It's just a slow news week-maybe ESPN et al wants to pump up their ratings.

    On a brighter note-Keith Olbermann hasn't said anything about this on Countdown-sometimes, he'll throw in sports segments(i.e. Barry Bonds), and sometimes, he'll throw in sports stuff in his "Worst Persons of the World" segments in with his daily O'Reilly rants. But he didn't mention a peep.
  4. PATRIOT64

    PATRIOT64 Rookie

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    I heard on another site to make the patriots play the Jets again but at the Meadowlands so the Pats lose 1 home game and have Belichick serve a 1 game suspension in THAT game as well
  5. pheenix11

    pheenix11 Rookie

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    Yes this is definitely overblown, this whole fiasco is a result of media driven sensationalism.

    All teams in the NFL take multiple pictures of the opposing team during the game, you see the QB's looking at the pics after every series. So what is the difference if they take pics or video of the coaches? They are part of the game, they are dictating what happens on the field.

    This whole thing is ridiculous. Its not cheating, they aren't "stealing" anything, these signs are all done out in the open. Someone with binoculars and a notepad could do the same thing.
  6. DarrylS

    DarrylS PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Precisely, is this country's sports fans this bored that they have this much fascination with this issue.. the Yankees are coming to town, Papi hit a walkoff, the Pats played incredibly well last Sunday, the Bruins are opening camp, big golf tournament in Atlanta this week, the "chase" starts in NASCAR this weekend.. on and on.. but somehow there is a national fascination with this event.. time to move on folks.. I am beginning to really believe that there was a misinterpretation of the rules.. not sure how, but nothing else makes sense. Time for a new scandal to divert us from this one..
  7. Aqua4Ever04

    Aqua4Ever04 Banned

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    If you use the naked eye to pick signals from your own sideline, then all the power to you. But how can any one condone sending a staff member to the oppositions sidelind to record calls and signals?
  8. DarrylS

    DarrylS PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Here is a real basic question for you? How do you edit and process this information during the game to make it meaningful during that game? Half time lasts 12 minutes, there are usually several folks giving signals, only one is not the decoy.. why would he do it so blatantly on the sidelines.. signals change from game to game.
  9. Aqua4Ever04

    Aqua4Ever04 Banned

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    Every play there are polaroids taken pre-snap, during the snap and at the conclusion of the play. You could very easily match those up with the tape during your halftime period and when the teams take the field for the 2nd half, the coaches work on the pairings and by time kick off, you know the signals. After this, you can use your coaches in the booth to look at what the coaches on the sideline signaled in, tell Tommy what he's facing, and watch him pick apart a defense where he knows exactly what's going to happen.

    If it didn't help them, why would they do it?
  10. DarrylS

    DarrylS PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Just as an exercise for fun, next time you go to a Fins game, have someone snap continual polaroids and you tape.. then go home and edit the tape, and match the polaroids to the film.. betcha it would take no less than maybe 8 hours if three people were working on it.

    Why did they do it, no one knows. But, maybe they were doing it for themselves and their library of stuff to review later. In this day of technology, using a hand held camera to cheat and trying to match it with polaroids is prehistoric. You along with much of the press have a fertile imagination.
  11. Aqua4Ever04

    Aqua4Ever04 Banned

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    Pretty much every player or coach that has stepped to the podium for press conferences this week has been asked about this topic. Obviously, no one will come out and directly say it, but behind that special NFL code, I've seen countless people basically say they cheated and they aren't happy about it. I haven't seen one coach or player come to the Pats side and defend them.
  12. SpiderFox53

    SpiderFox53 Rookie

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    Then you should try to find a tape of Gruden's interview from yesterday or the day before. He blatantly said "we all do it".

    But you'll try to spin that away.
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2007
  13. Pats726

    Pats726 Rookie

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    Actually he was on the Patriots side...catch up with things THAT pic has been debunked...
  14. frankiesfly

    frankiesfly Rookie

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    If anyone watched the game it was obvious the Pats didn't cheat. The Pats didn't have one reciever open. Maroney did crap all game. Moss was covered on all his completions but one. Watson was covered in the back of the end zone on his TD catch. Welker was pretty much covered on all his completions. The Pats won because Brady was threading needles, and because of Moss's skill. Brady threw 3 passess to Moss that were completed with a Jet velcroed to his back. Listen this is all because we are the Pats. Nothing more, nothing less. If this was the pathetic Jets that were caught, there probably wouldn't have been a word said. The league and all fans of other teams are so freaking jealous of us, they need something, or some reason to believe we aren't as good as we seem. This whole video thing is an illusion. I say illusion meaning, that this video thing doesn't help the Pats win more than anyone else not video taping. It doesn't. Look at the people making a big deal of this. It's either players from the Chargers, or Jets. The Chargers because we beat them last year in the playoffs, and the Jets because they are so tired of us wipping thier assess year in and year out. The media guys making a big deal of this are fans of those teams or the Colts. Minus those lameassess and there really is noone left to say ****.
  15. PatsWSB47

    PatsWSB47 Rookie

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    #12 Jersey

    If you are in school and the guy on your right takes a picture of your exam answers and then copies your answers on his exam from the picture then he's cheating, right? Good we agree. Then the guy on your left looks at your paper and copies all your answers on his exam then you say "more power to him"? :eek: :confused: Sorry no agreement on that one. They both did the same thing, they only used different methods.

    So now why all this holier than thou moral bullcrap on how the Patriots are the scum of the earth for stealing signals? Everyone does it but the Patriots went the high tech route which is a violation and they will be punished. Please STFU. You're being hypocrites. Can't you see the double standard??
    In any event, the Patriots kicked the Jets butts and the camera at that game was long gone when the patriots scored most of there points
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2007
  16. Bostonian1962

    Bostonian1962 Rookie

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    Are you saying stealing signals the way Saban and the Dolphins did last year is O.K., but the way the Patriots tried to do it is wrong?

    Come on Aqua, you can do better than that.
  17. PatsWSB47

    PatsWSB47 Rookie

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    #12 Jersey

    How about it? Nothing but a bunch of holier than thou hypocrites.
  18. Snowangel

    Snowangel Rookie

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    It's only cheating because the NFL has a "Bad Law" on the books. Like making Black people go to the back of the bus, this "Bad Law" should be repealed. There is no reason why EVERY team shouldn't be able to film coaches or players from wherever they want, as long as it's on their own sidelines-- which is exactly what the Pats were doing.

    Suck it up, and hide your signals or change them. The energy and B.S> involved in the investigation of this crap is ridiculous, and if all teams were allowed to film and tape everything, there would be no further problems.

    Bill is the man. Mangina is, once again-- in a lifetime of pussiness-- a pussie.
  19. PatsWSB47

    PatsWSB47 Rookie

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    #12 Jersey

    Take off the blinders.
  20. TedyB54

    TedyB54 Rookie

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    http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/inside_game/magazine/life_of_reilly/news/2002/01/09/life_of_reilly/

    "Our guy keeps a pair of binoculars on their signal-callers every game," says Broncos coach Mike Shanahan. "With any luck, we have their defensive signals figured out by halftime. Sometimes, by the end of the first quarter."

    After reading this article that was linked in another thread, here's basically the scenarios:

    Scenario A:

    Team uses a legal method (observing the other team across the field with binoculars), gathers information (other teams defensive signals) and uses that information to alter the outcome of the game (adjusting their offensive play calling based on the subsequent observed defensive signals). This, according to the media and many fans is NOT cheating.

    Scenario B:

    Team uses an illegal method (taping the other team across the field with a video camera), gathers information (other teams defensive signals) and uses that information to alter the outcome of the game (adjusting their offensive play calling based on the subsequent observed defensive signals). This, according to the media and non-Pats fans IS cheating, even though the information gathered and the eventual use and affect of it on the game are identical in both scenarios.

    There have been far too many claims now that the only reason why the Patriots have won all their games while under BB is soley due to them having figured out their opponents defensive signals and using that to their advantage.

    Meanwhile, this exactly what Mike Shanahan has admitted the Bronco's were able to do, except they got their info with binoculars instead of a video camera.

    I don't think our fans would deny that Pat's should be punished for violating the rule prohibiting the use of video cameras. However, if knowledge of the opposing teams defensive signals is enough to taint all of their victories and SB's from the national perspective, then shouldn't that also apply to the Broncos.

    Should we as Pat's fans now suddenly claim that we know why the Broncos have been able to beat us the last couple of years? Was it because they had guys watching our defensive coaches with binoculars and figuring out our signals by the end of the first quarter? No, it was because the beat us. Period.
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2007
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