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Condon’s comments hint that tampering will be rampant next week

Brandon Lloyd, Joe Haden AP

Every February, the NFL descends on Indianapolis for the Scouting Combine.  With only a few weeks to go until the launch of free agency, plenty of the meetings between teams and agents include discussions regarding specific clients of each agent who technically remain under contract with another team.

It’s the NFL’s dirty little secret, which via the passage of time has become neither little nor dirty.  It’s now an accepted business practice, so rampant that the league has in the past contemplated a pre-free agency period during which such communications don’t violate rules that are rarely enforced.

Today’s comments from agent Tom Condon to Ron Borges of the Boston Herald regarding Rams (for now) receiver Brandon Lloyd demonstrate the nonchalance of inevitable conversations that indisputably aren’t permitted.  “If [the Patriots] have an interest [in Lloyd] they call up and tell you when free agency starts or they meet you at the Combine or whenever.”

Neither Condon nor any other agent does anything wrong by engaging in such conversations.  Agents aren’t prohibited from talking to new teams about clients who are under contract with other teams.  Condon’s casual reference to these Combine meetings demonstrates the broader attitude toward these discussions.

Yes, the rule prohibit them.  No, nobody respects the rule.

So why not change the rule?  It’s a bad look for the NFL, having a bright-line rule on the books as to which the league office and every team wears blinders.

Maybe the Competition Committee, which now includes Rams coach Jeff Fisher, will add this one to its list of suggested changes to be considered by the full ownership in March.

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27 Responses to “Condon’s comments hint that tampering will be rampant next week”
  1. rc33 says: Feb 16, 2012 5:20 PM

    Combine-gate.
    Get your asterisks ready.

  2. suprinelolskins says: Feb 16, 2012 5:21 PM

    He should name his son Unused

  3. apm says: Feb 16, 2012 5:24 PM

    I’m shocked! Where’s my fainting couch?

  4. noeffinway says: Feb 16, 2012 5:30 PM

    So if everybody does it and nobody really cares – why did the Lions lose a draft pick for a silly comment that Gunther made???????????

  5. xtb3 says: Feb 16, 2012 5:36 PM

    Is he talking about Manning?

  6. noeffinway says: Feb 16, 2012 5:38 PM

    Lions DC Cunnigham: “(Kansas City) keeps wanting to dump their players. I would like to be there to catch a lot of them because I know a couple of those guys.”

    ………..annnnnnnnnd BAM! Lions busted for tampering last year, had to swap 5th round picks with KC and give up their 7th round pick. For THAT comment? You gotta be kidding me!

    Nobody respects the tampering rule????? SO why were the Lions penalized????????????

  7. illinininer says: Feb 16, 2012 5:39 PM

    And why did the 49ers lose a 5th rd draft pick for talking contract with Lance Briggs’ agent after the Bears granted him permission to seek a trade?

  8. tformation says: Feb 16, 2012 5:39 PM

    Yeah, this rule seems to exist only to punish people who talk to the press. Get rid of the silliness. Just be honest about what you’re doing, and we’ll respect you for it.

  9. jade amor says: Feb 16, 2012 5:40 PM

    So everyone is doing it…??? Then I guess the fool proof way of stopping every team from doing what every other team is doing, is to simply penalize Belichick $500,000, take $250,000 from Robert Kraft, and take New England’s First Round draft pick and that should set things straight with everyone, right??? LMFAO

  10. rushbacker says: Feb 16, 2012 5:49 PM

    At this point, I hope they keep it like it is. It’s amusing to watch the lawyer get all bent about a technicality that literally no one else cares about.

  11. djaehne says: Feb 16, 2012 5:52 PM

    will this help the jets accuse the patriots of
    cheating less times a year?

  12. thereisalwaysnextyear says: Feb 16, 2012 6:29 PM

    OR perhaps make F.A. period start days before the combine? Or change them both and make the F.A. period start just before the combine. Problem solved and some F.A.’s will get better jobs as a result of teams not having a chance to scout incoming college players at the combine.

  13. marima07 says: Feb 16, 2012 6:44 PM

    rc33 says: Feb 16, 2012 5:20 PM

    Combine-gate.
    Get your asterisks ready.
    ———————————-

    Apparently violating a league rule only matters if the Patriots are involved. Otherwise, carry on…

  14. hehateme30 says: Feb 16, 2012 7:12 PM

    Jeff Fisher is a cry baby!

  15. mrbigass says: Feb 16, 2012 7:38 PM

    Tamponing will be rampant………

    Get yur Midol ready!

  16. 6ball says: Feb 16, 2012 7:50 PM

    .

    Blah, Blah, …who cares ? Unless it’s the Patriots Then we need a congressional inquiry.

    .

  17. silverandblack052099 says: Feb 16, 2012 7:53 PM

    This is a perfect example of Roger Goodell’s NFL…

  18. beedubyatoo says: Feb 16, 2012 7:54 PM

    The Packers are the only team that is innocent and is clean as the driven snow.

  19. blackqbwhiterb says: Feb 16, 2012 8:41 PM

    does this mean the Redskins do a Haynesworth-type deal and get Peyton Manning at 12:02 am the day free agency begins?

  20. denverwally says: Feb 16, 2012 9:16 PM

    jade amor says:Feb 16, 2012 5:40 PM

    So everyone is doing it…??? Then I guess the fool proof way of stopping every team from doing what every other team is doing, is to simply penalize Belichick $500,000, take $250,000 from Robert Kraft, and take New England’s First Round draft pick and that should set things straight with everyone, right??? LMFAO
    ———————————————————-

    Actually, after they fined the Patriots they changed the rule all together. Everyone was doing it, they dinged the Pats, and then winked to the rest of the league.

  21. redsolocupdude says: Feb 16, 2012 10:26 PM

    Yeah you guys are right let’s get it over and disband the PATS….. Remove then from the Pantheon of NFL greatness….. Their Lombardies should be melt
    ed down…… 56 wins in the last 4 years……… Must be from cheating

  22. purpwalk says: Feb 16, 2012 11:05 PM

    never tamper with your condon

  23. patsfiend says: Feb 17, 2012 1:38 AM

    Somebody get Sen. Spector on the horn. The Pats are doing something everybody does, again, and they need to be punished appropriately so that they don’t go to the Super Bowl again for 2 years.

  24. omikeyboy says: Feb 17, 2012 3:33 AM

    Why do Patriot fans fail to admit their coach is a cheating fool, who just also happens to be a good coach? smh

  25. quittsburghstoolers says: Feb 17, 2012 5:19 AM

    djaehne says:Feb 16, 2012 5:52 PM

    will this help the jets accuse the patriots of
    cheating less times a year?

    ———————————————————-

    Of course it won’t.

    The Patsys will just find new and different
    ways to try & get around the league rules…

  26. sjhesketh says: Feb 17, 2012 4:21 PM

    Those of your shaking in your boots with rage about teams being docked draft picks…you realize that was because team executives made comments, right?

    Neither the Pats nor any other team has made comments about Lloyd. The only one yapping is Lloyd’s agent, which…you know…he’s free to do.

    I don’t get the outrage.

  27. bcgreg says: Feb 18, 2012 11:50 AM

    “Yes, the rule prohibit them. No, nobody respects the rule.

    So why not change the rule? It’s a bad look for the NFL, having a bright-line rule on the books as to which the league office and every team wears blinders.”

    ———–

    So, it’s OK to not “respect” this NFL rule, but Spygate is this big, huge story even though “blinders” were on in the league office over this for years? The rules on video taping are not as “bright-line” as the rules on tampering if you consider that, while haters believe you are not allowed to tape the opposing team sideline, there is in fact NO rule prohibiting WHAT is taped only where it can be taped from. In this, Belichick was at fault.

    However, the league has changed the rule on camera placement in that every team is now allowed cameras on the sideline for “in house productions” (those guys with the flourescent green vests) whereas before Spygate, this did not exist. Yeah, that won’t be abused if the teams are in control of these cameras, which they are. If anyone thinks Spygate-like practices don’t happen anymore, then you’re naive especially with these “in house production” cameras on every sideline for every team that are controlled by the team.

    If the league truly wants to come down hard on any “off field” shenanigans (tampering, video taping, cap circumvention), then they need to have clear cut rules in place and enforce them vigilantly. Otherwise, I don’t want to hear anyone bitch about anything regarding this stuff.

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