Rule about opposing scouts at paid practices was taken off the books

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As it turns out, the Panthers aren’t inviting espionage by charging admission to a practice that used to be free, thanks to a heretofore unreported rules change.

While previous attempts to charge fans to attend practice were offset by the fact opposing teams could send scouts to take notes, that’s no longer the case.

The league office told PFT that the rule was changed before the 2014 season, preventing such spying.

The policy now prohibits clubs: “from attending another club’s practice session regardless of whether or not there is an admission fee.  Unless permission has previously been received, club personnel or their representatives are prohibited from attending another club’s training session, including, but not limited to, practices, scrimmages or joint practices.”

So the Panthers decision to charge five bucks to attend a practice in Bank of America Stadium which has always been free doesn’t harm them from a competitive standpoint.

(A cynic would also point out that it clears the decks for teams to charge small fees for practices now, since there’s no reason not to other than furthering the impression they’d do anything for a buck.)

Since the Panthers are donating the proceeds to the team’s charitable foundation, some of the perception problem was diminished anyway. They decided to start ticketing the Fan Fest practice after a crowd of over 55,000 overwhelmed them in 2015, leading them to give out free tickets last year, when around 40,000 showed up.

All the Panthers practices at Wofford College in Spartanburg, S.C. are free and open to the public.

Washington charged fans to attend training camp in 2000, and the Cowboys sent a scout to take notes. The Vikings considered charging to attend their camp before owner Zygi Wilf waved off the plan after public complaints.

13 responses to “Rule about opposing scouts at paid practices was taken off the books

  1. ‘The policy now prohibits clubs: “from attending another club’s practice session regardless of whether or not there is an admission fee.”
    – – – –
    And how, exactly, would they police that ???

    Are there going to be pictures of all of the other 31 teams entire scout roster at each gate with the message ‘do not let any of these people in’ ???

  2. Can someone explain to me how New England knew Seattle would throw a slant at the 39 inch line under a minute to go and had practiced defending that play all week prior………when Seattle hadn’t thrown a goal line slant all season?

  3. Can someone explain to me how New England knew Seattle would throw a slant at the 39 inch line under a minute to go and had practiced defending that play all week prior………when Seattle hadn’t thrown a goal line slant all season?
    _________________________________________

    Go watch the documentary Do Your Job. BB lays it out very clearly on how they practiced that play up to the day before the SB. As always, BB was one step ahead of everyone else.

    But good on the Panthers for whatever this article is about. Based on the fact that 2 out of the 3 first comments are about the Patriots, its clear they live deep in the minds of fans of other teams.

  4. Hey Blessed, You never answered jackedup’s question? How did BB KNOW to practice against that play if Seattle never ran it all season?

  5. …. New England knew it was coming because Brandon Browner was on the Seahawks before coming to New England and they practiced that exact formation shift and play while he was on the Seahawks.
    This is not new information, by the way.

  6. Hey Hawaii, it seems you Patsy fans have an answer for everything. BB spent all week before the SB practicing defending against a play that Seattle hadn’t run all season because now Browner was on the Pats? Wow.

  7. “new england patriots”

    1. If it was legal why wouldn’t every team be doing this especially against division opponents?

    But that double standard the Pats haters live by says even if the Pats do something entirely within the rules, if you don’t like it it’s somehow “cheating”

    2. Note that the Cowboys are specifically mentioned as doing this, not the Pats.

    3. From what I understand Seattle had used that play earlier that season, and you people trying to create a myth that they didn’t are ridiculous. Its well and publically known there was film on that play, the Pats studied it, recognized the alignment and made the play.

    But to you people hard work and study is also “cheating”.

    SMH you’re going to spend much of your lives being disappointed because I doubt you’ll work hard enough to fulfill your desires since you somehow find hard work to be “cheating”

  8. This is confusing. So, if the practices are free, what’s to stop opposing scouts from just walking in with the crowd anyway?

  9. Look how fast the league can correct misinformation when it WANTS to. Now, about those false psi readings . . .

  10. The fact that we allow and accept scouts from other teams to watch practices is concerning for me anyway. Or filming or whatever. There shouldn’t be any of that allowed at all, or accepted in any form, and if you have to use film of or a scout at your opponent’s practice, you should be ashamed. Game film is another story, but practices should be and OTAs and such things should not be available for other teams.

  11. I don’t see anything wrong with this move. $5 is a small fee compared to a game ticket. I’m assuming the tickets come with a seat assignment, which prevents the utter chaos at the 2015 Fan Fest. Profits go to charity.

    And whether the event is free or has an entry fee, I absolutely guarantee that all 13 teams that play the Panthers this year will have personnel in the stands taking notes. That will occur with the other 31 teams as well. Anyone who thinks that rule is enforced is either dangerously naïve or irretrievably stupid.

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