Originally Posted by Jay
There's no doubt in my mind that the Pats have had very aggressive video taping procedures in place for a very long time. NFL rules allow for most of it, too. If they had their camera inside of a porta-potty on the sidelines, they would not have been breaking NFL rules. So that is why the video taping aspect has never been a big deal to me. The rule they broke had more to do with where they were and the fact that every team was told very specifically to not do it before the season.
Breaking into practices to tape the other team isn't even anything new. Jimmy Johnson said that one of the first things he was taught to do when he was hired by the Kansas City Chiefs was how to break into Dallas Cowboys practice to tape it. This shouldn't be shocking. Teams at every level have been doing stuff like this for a very long time.
I don't want that to seem like I am trying to condone the action, because if this proves to be true, it will be unacceptable. Period. Given the fact that the only thing the Rams practiced during that time was red zone plays, and they didn't even make it into the red zone until well into the fourth quarter, and they scored, I really don't think it had any affect if it happened. That doesn't condone the fact that it might have happened, but obviously the Patriots wouldn't have gained anything out of that tape until 80-90% of the game had already been played.
I just think it's easy to sit here and speculate, though. The NFL claims they have already investigated this rumor, and were satisfied in their research. How hard would it be for me to email some random reporter in Carolina and say "hey, don't tell anyone I told you this, but my brother used to work for the Patriots, and he actually crawled through the A/C ducts at the Super Dome and stole the entire Panthers playbook right out of the locker room and video taped their entire week of practice."
Then the next day, some over-zealous report that wants to see his name everywhere can write a story citing "unnamed sources."
I'll wait for some proof before I draw conclusions...
Where is the proof that Barry Bonds took performance enhancing drugs? I mean he never tested positive, so until then it's just he said, she said right.... oh wait... Odds are proof won't ever come out, but it does add fuel to an already humongous flame of public opinion.
And the everyone was doing it, there were no rules against it, argument doesn't make it any more right.
I know your a pats fan, but try to be objective. It is a big deal, it does change the competition level. So don't get sour when folks have a negative opinion about this. I am a SF Giants fan and I totally acknowledge all of the criticism that went to Bonds after the steroid allegations.
Oh and the league can definitely do more to punish the pats, because the pats signed in writing that the spygate tapes were the extent of that shady business and that if any more info came out they would be subject to further problems.