A shorter entry today, due to the fact it’s been a long couple of days. As a matter of fact, I have to say Sunday’s game against the Jets feels like it was weeks ago.
I’ll admit it, this has been an exhausting couple of days dealing with the fallout of the saga that unfolded surrounding the sign stealing accusations. There’s been no chance to enjoy the victory as a fan and talk about how good Randy Moss and the offense looked, or how good the defense performed. Should you start talking about either one, without fail sooner or later you here the word:
It’s a word that isn’t going to go away anytime soon. Like it or not this incident, regardless of how large or small anyone feels it may be, has become bigger than anyone could have expected. I mean let’s face it, fans can typically find common ground when it comes to their own team, but even now there is quite a divide between fans when the discussion comes to the degree of the severity or the significance of this incident.
I’ve reached the point where my opinion is this: I was a catcher in high school and always had to be aware of a team potentially figuring out what pitches I was calling. The second you see anything that makes you believe the other team is communicating that they’re aware of what’s coming, it was my job to change them up to keep them off balance. It was certainly the prerogative of the runner on base to make the attempt to figure out what I was doing, but it was also my job to be aware of anything suspicious and react.
But let me say this. If I found out that the coaches were calling in the signals to the batter from the dugout because there was a camera in center field watching my fingers to give the batter an advantage, I’d have been pretty angry. There are those who may wonder how big of an effect it would have or how big of an advantage it really would be. But think about it, all it takes is one pitch, a batter knowing a fastball was coming in, even to just get a single to get on base. So what if the guy who drove him in didn’t know the signs because I changed it up? If we lose 2-1, it would prove that it’s not how many times it gave them an edge, it’s about the one time it did make a difference. That’s what makes it wrong.
I’ll be honest, I don’t care if my coach decided to do it against our opponents. It would still aggravate me if I got beat because of a tactic that was against the rules. Your time in sports is short, and you may only get a few seasons to play. In the pros it’s sometimes just a matter of games for some players. But losing for any other reason other than being outplayed is one that most people would have a tough time dealing with.
Doing anything that is obviously illegal, while calling it a “misinterpretation of the rules”, is just wrong. I’m not going to be one who calls for Belichick’s head, or harps on this issue searching for an apology that’s never going to come. We know that Bill “is who he is”. We know that we’re not going to hear much of anything from him after the statement comes following whatever punishment the team receives. He’s obviously a proven winner, but now there will always be someone who wonders if those wins came for the wrong reason. Unfortunately he’s put the team, the organization, and its fans in a new situation of being looked down upon from every single opposing football team and their fans. They went from one of the classiest organizations in football, to one that will be scrutinized for years to come because of this.
Don’t kid yourselves. Wait until you see every road game this year. It’s going to be ugly, and good luck to Patriots fans heading off for a road game to watch their team. You’re probably going to need it.
As for the penalty, this is going to be interesting because according to all reports commissioner Roger Goodell is going to be looking to set a precedent for an incident that we really haven’t seen before, and he’s obviously getting pressure from the rest of the teams in the league to come down hard on this football team. Let’s face it, breaking the law off the field is one thing, we’ve obviously seen that in the NFL before and we’re familiar with how those incidents are handled. But breaking rules on the field for a form of cheating is something we aren’t familiar with. Yes, I’m aware that no official ruling has been made yet, but we all know one is coming. Most reports are saying that the decision may come on Friday when the Patriots are apparently supposed to present their side of the story. I guess my feeling is that it’s just really too bad that this incident has made it where that date has really become the more significant day of this week instead of the upcoming football game.
Needless to say like most fans I’ll be glad when this is no longer the main topic of discussion. And it can’t happen soon enough.
SITE NEWS: They’re Piling Up
Registrations as I said in yesterday’s entry have been restricted and require moderation approval. Fans from other teams who are obviously looking to cause trouble based on their usernames continue to come in fast and furious. I guess unless myself and the moderators decide that we need more pain and aggravation in our lives, here are a few new usernames that will be sitting and “awaiting” approval: Pats_Cheat, arrogance, and belicheat.