“Added security” planned for Super Bowl footballs

AP

There’s been a lot of discussion about the handling of footballs for the last two weeks and the NFL would prefer not to have a rehash of the topic after the Super Bowl, so they’ve made some changes to the process for Super Bowl Sunday.

The league already announced that the Bears equipment staff has been tabbed to oversee the pregame preparation of the footballs that the Patriots and Seahawks will use and NFL vice president of officiating Dean Blandino outlined some other differences on Thursday.

“There will be some added security just because of the environment we’re in for this game,” Blandino said, via ESPN.com.

The 54 balls (the high number is due to “charity commitments” for game-used Super Bowl balls) each team want to use will go to Bears equipment manager Tony Medlin on Friday and will remain in his possession with the additional security in place until referee Bill Vinovich inspects them a couple of hours before kickoff.

Blandino also said that the league plans to review all of their pregame procedures for dealing with footballs this offseason, presumably including the league’s practice of not logging the PSI of the balls during the initial check.

44 responses to ““Added security” planned for Super Bowl footballs

  1. Which network is going to be broadcasting this entire process? I still can’t believe that after another captivating season, that saw so many things occur in the league that what is going to be talked about many years from now is air pressure in footballs.

  2. What’s the over/under on Patriot fumbles this Sunday? Take the over. I hope Belicheat suffers a career ending coaching injury on Sunday.

  3. Only Goodell could screw up this bad. Balls have to be monitored by another team? Would it have too so hard to call the Pats and tell them there are rumors of deflating balls and it better stop now! But then the enforcer couldn’t have his picture and name spread throughout the tabloid world.

    It’d be nice to see the NFLPA fine Goodell for incompetence and tarnishing the shield.

  4. Extra added security for the balls, appears to me from the lat paragraph that the biggest problem here is that the refs weren’t doing their job in the first place.

  5. 54 balls? That poor bastard is definitely gonna be in the men’s room long enough for a #2. And should we really have a guy named “Medlin” meddling with these balls?

  6. Establish a minimum allowable psi at the start of the game, make sure they meet the minimum by actually using a gauge, and then let it go. Cold weather games have dropped psi in footballs since the first football game was played. If a QB wants “overinflated” footballs because that’s what his hand likes, so what. They’re harder to catch. Anything beyond that will just make things a little worse, which is what Goodell’s NFL seems to want.

  7. Ok, this has become ridiculous. If the NFL feels that the inflation of the football is all that important than that means that every Superbowl game ever played requires an asterisk because all the balls used were modified to suit the Quarterbacks. The NFL has become too pervasive in almost every aspect of the game. You want to help than get those bad calls corrected, bring in refs that can do the job professionally, use a replay system like that used in hockey.
    The NFL is worried about players? Indeed… then why don’t they insist on the players wearing all their pads. Running backs have left off wearing thigh pads for years. Sorry for the rant but I am so tired of this crap.

  8. and this announcement is just another well timed “leak” by the commisioner’s office to fuel public opinion and discourse.

  9. When the deflated ball story broke I truly believed that the league had finally outsmarted the Patriots and caught them with their pants down.

    But now? We know it wasn’t a sting operation as was originally reported (I am not even sure the league is capable of something that organized and thoroughly planned) and it’s becoming clearer every day that not only did the league simply react to the allegations at half time but they really had no idea how to handle the situation and still don’t.

    At this point if you believe the Patriots tampered with the footballs (I am still on the fence but I wouldn’t be surprised either way) can you really blame them? The league doesn’t keep the balls in a secure place after they check them for the game and even the process of checking the balls pregame appears to be a joke. Why wouldn’t a team alter the footballs to make them as user friendly as possible regardless of the rules? Especially if the league is displaying a pattern of behavior and incompetence which can only lead to the conclusion that up until half time of the 2015 AFC championship game they didn’t really care about the pressure of the balls.

    You can create all the rules you want but this is professional football and EVERY team is looking for a competitive edge. So if there is not a system of checks and balances to make sure the rules are being followed then the league is opening up itself for situations like the one that took place during the AFC championship game.

    The honor system will never work in a competitive professional sports league in which multimillion dollar careers are on the line.

  10. Plus the NFL will insert lead weights in the Patriots balls.

    Also, the NFL will spot Seattle 17 points.

    I mean, let’s just all assume the Patriots are cheaters without evidence and hand the championship to Seattle. That is honestly where this is headed…

  11. I’m not sure about the wisdom of relying for security on an organization that can’t get its phones to work during crucial moments.

    Maybe they should use the staff normally assigned to halftime performance security. Or player shoe color enforcement. They seem to be efficient.

  12. For next year brand new balls out of the box set @ 13.0 psi before opening kickoff. An NFL official will be the sole person in possession and in charge of these balls prior to kickoff. All balls will be deemed legal upon returning to the field for the second half of play.

  13. I’m going to play a drinking game where you do a shot everytime they pan in and for a close up on the ball boys. Probably won’t be coherent by kickoff. 🙂

  14. I am curious about something. The league admits that the pressures were not recorded anywhere. Has there been anything said that proves the balls were even checked with an air gauge by the officials? Or was it a quick look and a feel?

  15. Watched a video of refs checking balls before a nfl game just yesterday, PSI is so important to them they were saying things like “eh, this ones close enough”. And thats with a camera crew right there.

    Belichicks so far into peoples heads they could start making money off him by charging rent.

  16. This is the song that never ends…
    Yes it goes on and on my friend..

    Some people, started singing it not knowing what it’s was..
    And they’ll continue singing it forever just because…

    THIS IS THE SONG THAT DOESNT ENNNNDDD….

    Repeat x infinity

  17. Brady will still get to them. He is the NFL’s golden boy after all and he plays for the golden team of the NFL for the golden coach of the NFL.

    Aterisks all around!

  18. This is a tacit admission, or a strong suggestion, that there is knowledge in high places that the patriots broke a rule and the league would like to keep them from breaking it again.

  19. Extra security??? Why don’t the refs just keep the balls with them after checking them? I think N.E. or better yet Brady had the others deflated, but this is ridiculous. You think they would even consider doing something like that after this fiasco??? Just a crazy over reaction by the NFL.

  20. I don’t know what some of you people are reading, but it was found that the balls were found to be in upwards of 2psi less than regulation. Colts remained legal. You all must have some cool Patriot blinders on. You remind me of those parents that their child can do no wrong. It’s always someone else’s fault or someone is out to get you. It’s obvious what happened….just admit it and I bet 90% of people will have more respect for you rather then insulting everyones intelligence by saying you don’t know how the balls got that way.

  21. watching fans of inferior teams cry bitter tears & desperately latch on to every Patriots conspiracy theory is more entertaining than the actual games

  22. There’s no way the league can allow the Patriots to win this game. Whatever it takes, that just can’t happen. Too much of a black eye on the league.

    That’s really good news for all of us Hawks fans, but I really hope that Seattle just crushes the Pats so bad that no one can ever claim that the fix was in.

  23. They should make sure all the Patriots footballs are inflated to 13.5 PSI, that will show them!

    Seriously if, apparently, no QB likes the range you are using, if they “all” tamper with the balls, change the range to 10.5 – 11.5 and save everyone some confusion and headache.

  24. I can see it now. “And now, from the firm of Ernst and Young, the football security guys”. A bunch of folks, like those that protect awards show envelopes, come out.

    Or, from the private contracting firm of XYZ, the football guys”. They then come out with machine guns and footballs.

    We need sone background music for them. Any nominations?

  25. So the Bears staff, who the Pats have hammered the last couple times they played them get control of the SB balls?

    Pretty obvious setup scumbag Goodell. How about actual league employees take care of the balls?

  26. Footballs? That was two weeks ago. Creepy Crooked Bill has probably moved on to communications equipment, yard markers, etc.

  27. The Patriots are cheaters, always have been. They’ll break whatever rules they can, to gain an edge over their opponents. That’s their M.O. The handling of this by the NFL has left a bad taste in my mouth.

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