The folks at Dunder Mifflin have moved another step toward irrelevance.
The Cincinnati Bengals, widely regarded as one of NFL franchises most extremely careful with money (is there a limit on how many times the same YouTube clip can be linked in one day?), no longer will be spending that money on paper for playbooks. Instead, owner Mike Brown has broken open his change purse for 110 iPads, reports Joe Reedy of the Cincinnati Enquirer.
Reedy writes that executive V.P. Katie Blackburn, Brown’s daughter, proposed the move last year. Coach Marvin Lewis opted to wait, in part due to the lockout. He’s now a believer.
“For a guy to watch what they’re watching on the screen clearly [and] watch in front of them, too, if they want and be able to take notes on it, it’s very user-friendly,” Lewis said.
From the purchase of the units to the upgrades to the in-house computer infrastructure, the project cost the Bengals “hundreds of thousands of dollars.” But there can be no dispute it will make the overall process more efficient. The iPads also allow almost immediate access to game film and practice video, which remotely can be sent to the devices. Game plans for the coming week no longer need to be manually prepared, with copies collated and distributed on Tuesday.
And each iPad can be erased remotely as well, quickly and easily.
“It is more secure than the old playbooks,” Bengals IT consultant Geoff Smith said. “If a player was disgruntled they could go to Kinko’s and make 100 copies and send it to everyone. They can’t do that with this.”
Still, the fact that the low-tech, bottom-line-obsessed Bengals have embraced the process means three things: (1) the Bengals are now committed to winning; (2) if it wasn’t well worth the money, the Bengals surely wouldn’t be doing it; and (3) there’s no excuse for anyone in the Bengals organization (or the rest of you who have an iPad) to not download the NBC SportsTalk app, which features all PFT content.
Yeah. It’s a crummy commercial. (“Sonofabitch.”)