"Holy Toledo!"

May 15, 2008

Latest Update: Is The NFL Covering Up The Patriots Scandal?

Filed under: Baskettball, NFL — Bill @ 12:00 am

Matt Walsh first reported directly to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, then he went to Senator Arlen Specter’s office. From there he left Washington and promptly went to talk to HBO. From a fans standpoint one wonders what to believe, who is reporting the truth, or does the truth even matter. Read the following excerpts from several articles and decide for yourself.

Former New England video assistant Matt Walsh dismissed Patriots coach Bill Belichick’s attempts to minimize the impact of the team’s illegal taping of opponents’ coaching signals.

“If it was of little or no importance, I imagine they wouldn’t have continued to do it, and probably not taken the chances of going down onto the field in Pittsburgh or shooting from other teams’ stadiums the way we did.”

Walsh told HBO that his superiors coached him on how to evade NFL rules limiting the number of camera operators per team to two, and that team officials instructed him on ways to avoid detection.

“The line of reasoning that we would give to other teams for why we need a third camera setup was, ‘Well, our coaches want to have a tight shot of the kicker and the holder … exchange just to go over with the guys in meetings. You know, they want a tight shot, you know, of the quarterback, you know, just to go over the quarterback’s footwork and mechanics in meetings,'” said Walsh, who mentioned Patriots video coordinator Jimmy Dee as one of the superiors who coached him.

“If I was in the end zone, we would say, ‘Well, we just want to have two end zone shots of the game because our coaches like always seeing the view of our players’ backs.'”

Kremer asked Walsh about Belichick’s comments about his lack of familiarity with Walsh and his actions, referencing a comment that “I couldn’t pick Matt Walsh out of a lineup?”

“Um, it’s funny. The first time I heard that was when somebody in Hawaii brought the quote to me, too. And my first hand answer to them was, ‘Well, I wonder if he can pick me out on one of the three team pictures we’re in together.’

“I don’t know, if I was just that forgettable and he can’t remember me, or if he was just trying to distance himself from this whole situation as best as he could. … I think Bill’s got a pretty good memory.”
Kremer also asked about Belichick’s claim that he misinterpreted NFL rules.

“When I was doing it, I understood what we were doing to be wrong,” Walsh said. “We went to great lengths to keep from being caught. Just saying that the rules were misinterpreted isn’t enough of an apology or a reasoning for what was done. … Coach Belichick’s explanation for having misinterpreted the rules, to me, that really didn’t sound like taking responsibility for what we had done, especially considering the great lengths that we had gone through to hide what we were doing.”

After meeting with a former New England Patriots employee who helped the team spy on opponents, Senator Arlen Specter on Wednesday described the team’s illicit videotaping tactics as more systematic and deliberate than what the N.F.L. has acknowledged publicly.

Mr. Specter, a Republican from Pennsylvania, said the former employee, Matt Walsh, described elaborate measures by the Patriots to conceal their filming of opponents’ signals. Mr. Walsh also explained how the Patriots’ coaching staff gleaned strategic information from members of the team’s video crew who had watched the St. Louis Rams’ walk-through practice before the 2002 Super Bowl.

He also identified more games and opponents that were filmed by the Patriots and detailed the advantages the team gained in later games.

The Patriots deny any wrongdoing, naturally. They have already been fined by the NFL. The NFL prefers to keep this matter under wraps because the Patriots are one of their top drawing cards. Opponents of the Patriots are up in arms, just ask any Jets fans.

Would it surprise you if the NFL were covering up a Patriots scandal? This league depends on the Las Vegas line for a huge portion of it’s support, so moral obligations mean nothing.

Past history tells us that the NFL has no problem riding on the backs of criminals, cheaters, wife beaters, steroid users, drug dealers, so long as TV ratings are up. Names like Hollywood Henderson or (the newest member of “America’s Team”) Pac Man Jones just to name two. So morals be damned, ratings or bust baby.

Bottom line is that the Patriots are guilty, they have been fined (severely), but is that enough? Make up your own mind…
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