Thursday, May 08, 2008
[For all of you that consistently criticize me but nonetheless come to this blog more often than you sit down to eat, I am announcing this is my final blog entry. More on that later.]
Today we are going to discuss the fact that the Patriots, cheaters and champions that they are, have been further busted by the NFL.
As you know, they were fined $750,000 as an organization, had to forfeit a first-round pick this year, and coach Bill Belichick was fined $500,000 for taping the defensive signals of other teams.
Seems they also stole opponents' offensive signals, too.
At least they stole the Dolphins offensive signals, according to a report by USA Today.
Among the tapes delivered by former New England video employee Matt Walsh to the NFL is a tape marked to indicate it contains the Miami Dolphins' offensive signals from an Oct. 7, 2001 game against the Patriots.
"One of the tapes is labeled that way. Until we review it, we don't know what's there," NFL spokesman Greg Aiello told the newspaper.
It remains to be seen if the NFL will further cite the Patriots for this latest example of how that team trampled league rules against taping opponents. When it originally spanked the Patriots last season, the league noted the punishment was for videotaping opponents' defensive signals, never mentioning offensive signals.
By the letter of Commissioner Roger Goodell's statement, the taping of offensive signals was not included in that punishment. So further punishment seems in order if the Patriots indeed gained a competitive advantage in that game and others as a result of taping offensive signals.
Taping of signals is considered to be an advantage in an ensuing game, generally after coaches have had time to study the signals. In the best case scenario, the Patriots could have gained an advantage in the second half, after studying Miami's offensive signals at halftime.
The problem is the Patriots lost the Oct. 7 game 30-10 so no amount of cheating could really have helped them. They did win the rematch on Dec. 22, 2001, 20-13, but the thing that killed the Dolphins that game was, well, the Dolphins.
Lamar Smith fumbled at the 2 yard line, ending Miami's hopes for one score. Jed Weaver caught a pass for 19 yards and fumbled, ending another drive. Both Pat Surtain and Sam Madison drew crucial penalties inside the Miami 25 yard line that led to New England points. And Ed Perry fumbled a kickoff that led to a field goal.
So did the Patriots (and their pictured cheerleaders) cheat? Probably.
But did the Dolphins lose because of it? Didn't look that way.
[I want to say good-bye as this will be my last post on blogger.com. My blogs will now move to typepad.com! What does that mean to me? It means The Herald is going to start making money off this blog because there will be ads about the site. For you, it means nothing. I remain in your lives! But I figured it was a chance to mess with your heads a little.]