Patriots’ full response to latest ESPN report

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We’ll be posting plenty of stories coming from the lengthy ESPN report that delves into the roots of Spygate and other allegations of Patriots cheating. For now, though, it’s important to present something that initially wasn’t fully presented in the ESPN story.

The team’s response. Here it is:

“The New England Patriots have never filmed or recorded another team’s practice or walkthrough,” the statement reads. “The first time we ever heard of such an accusation came in 2008, the day before Super Bowl XLII, when the Boston Herald reported an allegation from a disgruntled former employee. That report created a media firestorm that extended globally and was discussed incessantly for months. It took four months before that newspaper retracted its story and offered the team a front and back page apology for the damage done. Clearly, the damage has been irreparable. As recently as last month, over seven years after the retraction and apology was issued, ESPN issued the following apology to the Patriots for continuing to perpetuate the myth: ‘On two occasions in recent weeks, SportsCenter incorrectly cited a 2002 report regarding the New England Patriots and Super Bowl XXXVI. That story was found to be false, and should not have been part of our reporting. We apologize to the Patriots organization.’

“This type of reporting over the past seven years has led to additional unfounded, unwarranted and, quite frankly, unbelievable allegations by former players, coaches and executives. None of which have ever been substantiated, but many of which continue to be propagated. The New England Patriots are led by an owner whose well-documented efforts on league-wide initiatives – from TV contracts to preventing a work stoppage – have earned him the reputation as one of the best in the NFL. For the past 16 years, the Patriots have been led by one of the league’s all-time greatest coaches and one of its all-time greatest quarterbacks. It is disappointing that some choose to believe in myths, conjecture and rumors rather than giving credit for the team’s successes to Coach Belichick, his staff and the players for their hard work, attention to detail, methodical weekly preparation, diligence and overall performance.”

Here’s the version that made its way into the main story: “The New England Patriots have never filmed or recorded another team’s practice of walkthrough…. Clearly the damage has been irreparable…. It is disappointing that some choose to believe in myths, conjecture and rumors rather than give credit to coach Belichick, his staff and the players.”

The full statement has been placed on ESPN.com in a box, separate from the main text. It’s currently unclear whether the statement originally appeared there, or whether it was added later.

We’ll be linking to the team’s response in any of the various stories that flow from the new ESPN report. And there likely will be plenty of stories.

179 responses to “Patriots’ full response to latest ESPN report

  1. ESPN carrying the leagues water again. I bet Goodell can get a job there after he gets fired as Commissioner.

  2. Wow, Cuban sure was right…. this league is a joke. No team and fans should have to go through this.

  3. Run afoul of Goodell and you can expect plenty planted leaks and propaganda casting your organization in a negative light, and no court can stop him. That’s how the man rolls.

  4. the evidence says otherwise! oh wait, the evidence was destroyed you say?!?!?! to preserve the integrity of the shield?? just more fantastic work, goodell…now get out…

  5. ESPN carrying the leagues water again. I bet Goodell can get an analyst job there after he gets fired as Commissioner.

  6. Comes across as nothing but petulant for the league to go back to this just a few days after getting spanked in court. Lot of people (correctly, I believe) think that Goodell has to go, but it seems the rot in the league office spreads far beyond his door.

  7. And still is legal, just not in the position the Pats did it the year they made that section illegal. Got caught, took the punishment. Sour grapes from everyone else accusing they were the only ones who did it.

  8. ESPN Sucks. I wouldn’t be surprised if Führer Goodell and his henchmen are behind this, the juvenile, petty miscreants that they are. ESPN is the propaganda branch of the current NFL administration on Park Ave. A poison, incestuous relationship that is uncommon from any relationship in mass media history. If this is the “new normal” for the NFL then all fans are screwed.

  9. Time for Jay to start showing his copies of the tapes and end this crap right now. Time for Kraft’s lawyers to make a call to Disney and ESPN.

  10. So they had a camera in an improper location for 1 quarter of one game and they had balls that were naturally deflated by the weather.

    Someone get me my fan. I do declare I have a case of the vapors.

  11. rushmore86 says:
    Sep 8, 2015 9:57 AM
    ESPN does realize that videotaping signals WAS legal before ’06, right?

    _________________________

    I care less about the videos and more about the employees stealing playsheets from the locker room. Or the radio issues? Disguising employees as reporters?

  12. No dog in this fight, but stealing signals has been around as long as there have been signals to steal….or Pitches tipped….or bases stolen…or….

  13. rushmore86 says:
    Sep 8, 2015 9:57 AM

    ESPN does realize that videotaping signals WAS legal before ’06, right?

    Please define the difference between legal and ethical.
    thank you in advance

  14. The Patriots’ statement was written by a lawyer. How can you tell a lawyer is lying? His lips are moving. What else would you expect the Patriots to say? Admit they cheated? Hardly. I remember hearing about them destroying the evidence and I thought that was very strange. I remember Jay Glazer having an excerpt of one of those tapes and he showed it on the FOX pre-game one week. The NFL was really upset about this getting leaked. How the Patriots can deny everything is beyond me.

  15. Kraft is a great owner and anyone who says they wouldnt want him is just jealous of the Patriots long sustained success. I wish he fought like this when it first came out and we would have kept our draft picks…..Go GETTEM MR KRAFT!!!!

  16. It’s hard to give credit to the Patriots for any of their Superbowls during the Brady-Bilichick era… mainly because as a team they did not have to cheat… As individual nothing special about them but as a team they could of lined up and beat anybody, they could of won those Superbowls without cheating because you still had to stop them and execute your play regardless if they new the play or not… All this to say… I will be leaving them out of the greatest dynasty conversation from now on… When in fact the probably were one of the greatest dynasty’s… Indeed…

  17. I’m a diehard Bills fan, and I’m so sick of all this conjecture regarding the Patriots. It’s so obviously rooted in so much media bias; it really is disgusting. “Let’s attempt to tear this franchise down because we, and many of our ignorant followers have so much disdain for everything they’ve accomplished.”

    Leave the Pats alone. Their coach is an all-time great, who is despised by the media because he never plays into their BS. Their QB is an all-time great, who is now despised by the media because he destroyed his own property, and the owner is a rich guy who’s done a lot of good – a lot more good than a lot of other rich guys in his same position.

    What do ignorant people do when they have factual evidence that someone or something is purely better than them? They make excuses. They can’t look in the mirror and accept the hard truth. This is what is happening with this Franchise and the media storm that has followed. Everyone needs to man up and just leave it alone already.

  18. @rushmore86 — taping signals is still legal. You simply can’t do it from the sidelines (per a memo, NOT a rule), which is what the Pats were punished for.

  19. Additionally,

    It is irresponsible of the four letter sports network to selectively print portions of the Patriots response to the story.

    John Tomasse and the Boston Herald got it wrong, period.

  20. Bill Cowher gave an interview last year where he clearly said 1 – everyone was doing it at the time and 2 – he *always* had a Steelers employee or employees trying to steal the other teams signals. When they installed comms gear in the helmets it basically made those moot points though.

    Google “Bill Cowher stealing signals” – its been out there for almost two years. Shocking that ESPN didnt want to provide a balanced story though.

  21. I wish someone would sue the pants off ESPN….

    These rumors are merely deflection to take the heat off 345 Park Ave. NY.

    ESPN by constantly bad mouthing their biggest cash cow, will come back to haunt them.

  22. ESPN publishing this story is like throwing a snowball with a rock in the middle of it. There is a matter of trust that is betrayed here. The teams shouldn’t have to police professional networks’ shoddy reporting.

  23. I’ll give you Patriots fans credit for being steadfast in your delusions. I guess you have to be if you want to still be fans. Who in their right mind would support a bunch of cheaters? I blame Belacheat. Where do you think that Brady learned that cheating is okay?

  24. An ESPN Outside The Lines program spread lies about the Patriots in the immediate days of the NFL’s Deflategate slander campaign against the Patriots when Kelly Naqi chased one of the team’s equipment guys up his driveway accusing him of trying to put an unapproved ball into the AFCCG. ESPN later retracted the story when it became known it was actually an NFL employee who did the dirty deed. Naqi’ s excuse for screwing up the story was that she had several sources in the NFL office that verified the story.

    Now that Brady beat the NFL in court the NFL and ESPN slander machines are back in play with Judge Berman, Robert Kraft, Bill Belichick and the Patriots as targets.

    Losers like Mike Martz are being marched out with their hurt feelings. How are they explaining away the AFCCG beat down of the Colts and the comeback against a Seattle team that blew out the Broncos the previous year? How are they explains all the NFL and ESPN shows over the last 15 years praising Brady, Belichick, and the Patriots? We’re they lying to the public?

  25. … Just stop and think people. How would it be be possible that not one former player or coach would ever have any(and I do mean ANY) evidence of cheating by the Patriots. The only evidence is filming signals from the wrong location.

  26. I’m sorry, but what relevance does this have to 2015? 2007 was 8 years ago, why is this being reported after the NFL lost in court?

    Oh yea, that’s right – ESPN is carrying the NFL’s water AGAIN. But it won’t stop the pitchfork-carrying masses to call the Pats cheaters again.

    This was over with and done, and the Pats have been appropriately punished for Spygate. You’d have to be a blind hater to not see what ESPN is doing here – smearing the Pats once more to make the NFL look justified in their actions.

    Or are you going to say that this is pure coincidence that OTL decided that the week after the NFL lost in humiliating fashion in court that they were going to release the Spygate info again. It’s crazy how much hate some people have…

  27. rushmore86 says:
    Sep 8, 2015 9:57 AM
    ESPN does realize that videotaping signals WAS legal before ’06, right?
    ——————–
    Guess what, it’s still legal and has never been illegal. The infraction was for camera placement.

  28. Sad when the NFL’s top franchise is at war with the league. Still, way too much smoke for there not to be any fire here. Pats fans stop rationalizing. You can’t minimize/whitewash/trivialize/explain away EVERY ONE of these multiple, varied and long-term actions and allegations any more. Your franchise should own up and change its ways, and so should you. If cheating is so endemic in this organization it may be time for the perpetrators to be banished from the league and titles to be rescinded. This is the legacy YOUR TEAM has created for itself.

  29. whenwilliteverend says:
    “How the Patriots can deny everything is beyond me.”

    The Patriots never denied taping other team’s signals. They DID, however, deny taping other team’s practices & walkthroughs, and the news article that came out claiming this happened was later retracted when it was found to be untrue.

    Let’s not muddy the waters with facts, now, though.

  30. marcuswelby1 says:
    Sep 8, 2015 10:06 AM
    To Mr. Kraft…close ranks, do not allow any ESPN personnel on Patriot owned facilities.
    ———————————————-
    Isn’t that how we got to where were at today???

  31. Spygate in a nutshell from a Bleacher Report Article.

    The Rule presented in a 2006 memo:

    No video recording devices of any kind are permitted to be in use in the coaches’ booth, on the field, or in the locker room during the game. All video shooting locations must be enclosed on all sides with a roof overhead. Any use by any club at any time, from the start to the finish of any game in which such club is a participant, of any communications or information-gathering equipment, other than Polaroid-type cameras or field telephones, shall be prohibited, including without limitation videotape machines, telephone tapping, or bugging devices, or any other form of electronic devices that might aid a team during the playing of a game (ESPN.com and boston.com).

    A quote from Bill Belichick:

    My interpretation was that you can’t utilize anything to assist you during that game. What our camera guys do is clearly not allowed to be used during the game and has never been used during that game that it was shot. Once we were penalized, the practice was immediately stopped.

  32. willycents says:
    Sep 8, 2015 10:06 AM
    rushmore86 says:
    Sep 8, 2015 9:57 AM

    ESPN does realize that videotaping signals WAS legal before ’06, right?

    Please define the difference between legal and ethical.
    thank you in advance
    ————————-
    There’s a reason the memo went out to the entire league. If you can’t figure out that this was common practice by now I feel sorry for you.

  33. It is disappointing that some choose to believe in myths, conjecture and rumors rather than giving credit for the team’s successes to Coach Belichick, his staff and the players for their hard work, attention to detail, methodical weekly preparation, diligence and overall performance.

  34. The statement address “practices and walkthrough” but didn’t say anything about taping signals during the games between 2000 and 2007.

  35. How does the league benefit by falsely accusing the Patriots in multiple cheating scandals over several years? The only other major scandal was Bountygate, but otherwise the Pats are the only team in the crossfire.

    It doesn’t make any sense, unless there was some sort of wrongdoing. The league might be exaggerating their claims, but to claim the league is completely falsifying everything is the grandest of conspiracy theories possible for the situations. Both sides are likely wrong to some degree, even though many fans take the simple-minded approach of believing that only one side can by wrong.

  36. So, the NFL, after losing in court, digs up a bunch of former players and staff, convinced them to lie, and passes them off to ESPN, who hurriedly produced a documentary that is a complete myth?

    C’mon, even judge Berman implied that he believed the Patriots and Brady deflated balls, just that the NFL couldn’t suspend him for it. But the Patriot excuse factory just keeps churning them out.

  37. Everything is beyond bigoted NFL fans who spend more time worrying about the success of the New England Patriots than their own families. Can’t imagine what kind of home they must put their families through. Such petty prejudiced thinking assuming every unfound smear and lie goes directly to their foolish believe that the only reason this team wins is because they cheated.

    How many of you men out there remember the most cowardly kids in your neighborhood growing up always calling everybody a cheater when in fact these kids never mixed with anybody else, they went around calling everybody cheaters. Same thing, same cowards, all bigots. Screw ESPN and the NFL, they are and it has been proven the real cheaters.

  38. “Your franchise should own up and change its ways, and so should you.”

    I should change my ways? Me? As a fan? As a person?

    Please. Piss off.

  39. Since everyone commenting here thinks the NFL is so awful, maybe Robert Kraft should take his team and start his own football league.

    This way the Patriots would always win, thus pleasing their spoiled bandwagon fans (who is John Hannah?), and there would never be any wrongdoing or controversy.

  40. Repeat after me: This report does not help Goodell or the NFL. If anything, it makes them look like incompetent fools that buried a story as big as Pete Rose gambling or steroid users being banished from baseball or the Hall of Fame.

    This is about a league unwilling to protect it’s integrity in order to facilitate a facade of perfection and power. In my book that is cowardice.

    Do not link Spygate and Deflategate. This tarnishes the league beyond repair and it starts at that top. Goodell needs to go.

  41. The holier than thou fans of 31 other teams really need to check the history of whatever team you follow.

    All 32 teams have repeatedly been caught doing naughty things the last 15-20. All teams push the envelope.

    In fact in America pushing the limits to be the best you can be used to be respected, innovation used to be respected. Now the Nanny State whiners who don’t even want to keep score in high school games because the kids “might get their feelings hurt” or might “not feel good enough about having played hard” can’t stand the fact that someone is better at a sport or anything for that matter, than anyone else.

    SMH

  42. It’s only Pats fans who think they have a dynasty. Belicheat hires 3 men to come up with ways to cheat so they cheat 100 ways every week to beat the 2 win Jags and brag. The players don’t have a choice. They’re all tarnished. You guys keep forgetting what you’re not getting caught at. Belicheat needed to cheat because he had the worst QB and roster ever.

    I celebrate real successful franchises. Not fake ones. I don’t hate untarnished real winners.

    Packers 13
    Bears 9
    Giants 8
    Steelers 6
    Niners 5
    Cowboys 5
    There’s a bunch with 4, 3, 2, and 1 without cheating.

    **** puts the Pats at -4. That’s what the Pats fans call the greatest dynasty ever when every other NFL team has a classier tesm to root for. They won 0 without the greatest cheating coach in NFL history.

  43. Robert Kraft took his punishment and shut up because he knew every owner in the league was just waiting to expose all of the Patriot’s cheating and Goodell told him to take his punishment quietly and he would make it go away, but after Brady got his ruling overturned it’s now open season on the Patriots. Every story of them cheating is going to come out now. It’s been covered up for years, but everyone around the league knew about it which is why they came down so hard on something that seemed as innocuous as deflating footballs. Every owner in the league was sick of the Patriots playing by their own set of rules and it had to end. Brady should have shut up and taken his punishment just like Kraft did, because now every story will come out and the entire Patriot legacy will be destroyed. Nobody outside of New England believes these liars anymore.

  44. Does any other team get this level of scrutiny? I’m not a Patriots fan by any measure, but I can guarantee this kind of stuff goes on all over the place in the NFL. You sure as heck can’t tell me that the big dynasty teams from the past didn’t do everything possible to win. Now it’s just a trillion times easier to get caught (that might be conservative). Good on the NFL to leak all of this stuff after they lost the court case. Now Goodell can take his under inflated balls and go home.

  45. The Patriots crime is winning.

    Espionage? Is that suppose to be a dirty word?

    Is the NFL and ESPN saying they covered up more serious violations against the organization in order to target a player? I guess Brady’s chance of winning a defamation suit just increased tenfold.

  46. What a complete and utter piece of garbage the NFL and ESPN are. They both get destroyed or their handling of deflategate, so they throw out a red herring with a pretty new spin on it. So many baseless allegations in that article, it’s disgusting. We already know what happened, it wasn’t illegal. Even filming from the sidelines: not illegal. Everything else is nothing more than he-said, she-said nonsense planted by paranoid people from other teams that are sour after losing. The New England Patriots should sue ESPN for libel after this trash. Another 50 “anonymous sources” magically coming out after 8 years to call this team and only this team an innovator in cheating at football. What complete malarkey.

  47. “How does the league benefit by falsely accusing the Patriots in multiple cheating scandals over several years? The only other major scandal was Bountygate, but otherwise the Pats are the only team in the crossfire.”

    First of all the league doesn’t benefit, but whiner Harbaugh and the assortment of former Jets and Philly executives who loath the Pats do benefit, as do the whining Marshmellos ie Colts. Its those human beings who benefit. The less competent people who can’t compete effectively with Belichick and the Pats.

    Second, there have been numerous “cheating” issues with other teams, including noise gate, text gate, and bullygate but hey, lets just pretend they never existed so you can act like the mean ol’ Pats are so horrible.

  48. It’s always everyone else’s fault and the Patriots can do no wrong in the eyes of anyone in the New England area.

    Keep playing the victim all you want but be advised that no one anywhere outside of that region’s little utopian bubble is buying anything that comes out of that place.

  49. The videotaping also involved preseason games, and I think a reasonable person would assume the Pats would continue the practice into the postseason, including the Super Bowls. Having someone just tape the first half of any postseason game could have provided valuable information for the second half. And taping opponent practices certainly would have been plausible, given the fact how the Pats like to push the limit on the rules.

    Let’s also remember the three SB winning Pats teams weren’t exactly loaded with HOF talent, and they won those games in close fashion. The 1978 Steelers would have destroyed the 2003 Carolina Panthers, not barely pulled out the win like the Pats did.

  50. If I was the owner of the Patriots I would give ESPN (with apologies to Mike Reiss) the Donal Trump Jorge Ramos treatment.

    You can attend every press conference and/or press related event; however, we will never call on any of your personnel.

    Ever.

  51. They already did it with the, Washington Redskins, when they made them pay $36 million back to league when there was no salary cap. No salary cap mean free spending! NFL league office is stupid af, led by that bone head Goddell!

  52. They already did it with the, Washington Redskins, when they made them pay $36 million back to league when there was no salary cap. No salary cap mean free spending! NFL league office is stupid af, led by that bone head Goddell!

  53. Fans said it’s OK if they were doing it because everyone else was doing it.
    But the team never did it. Except when they did.

    The first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem.

  54. Deflategate blew up in their faces and so now the NFL is finding other ways to stick it to the Patriots. ESPN and NFL: keep poking the bear. You know how the Patriots play when it’s an “us against the world” situation.

  55. I don’t even care if any of this is true at this point. This league’s credibility is circling the drain. Mark Cuban looks smarter and smarter by the minute.

  56. At some point in the past:

    Goodell: “Kraft, we need parity!”
    Kraft: “We have the money to get great players.”
    Goodell: “Kraft, you heard me, dumb it down…take a few for the team and throw a few games.”
    Kraft: “But that’s not fair to the players.”
    Goodell: “Kraft, you heard me! The other teams aren’t as good and we live in a participation trophy era. Dumb it down, take it easy, let other teams win some.”.
    Kraft: “Absolutely not, we’re going to play our best.”
    Goodell: “Kraft, you’ll pay for this!!! Mark my words!”

    Now, fast forward to today a’ la ESPN.

  57. hivelocityimpactsplatter says:
    Sep 8, 2015 10:24 AM

    So, the NFL, after losing in court, digs up a bunch of former players and staff, convinced them to lie, and passes them off to ESPN, who hurriedly produced a documentary that is a complete myth?

    C’mon, even judge Berman implied that he believed the Patriots and Brady deflated balls, just that the NFL couldn’t suspend him for it. But the Patriot excuse factory just keeps churning them out.
    ——————————————————
    Oh I’m begging you! Show me a quote of Berman implying balls were deflated. From the appeal hearing:

    “Turns out, Mr. Brady did better with higher inflated balls than underinflated balls,” the judge said. “You might say he got no competitive advantage.”

    At one point, the judge also seemed to try to defuse the controversy, saying: “This ‘Deflategate.’ I’m not sure where the ‘gate’ comes from.”

    In other words, I’m not sure there was a violation. I don’t see any scandal here.

  58. Funny how they didn’t mentioned live games, but only walkthroughs and practices.

    And yes it was illegal prior to 06. The NFL just didn’t think that someone would have been so brazen as what the Pat’s did.

  59. ATTENTION PATRIOT FANS:
    You want this to stop? No longer go to ESPN’s website, NFL website, no longer purchase any NFL merchandise of any kind, no longer watch any other games than the Patriots games, no longer listen to any other stations than The sports Hub and WEEI for sports information. The point is cut this off where it hurts the pocketbook. When six states (minus the third of connecticut that are Giant fans)
    ban together and hit this league in the pocketbook the nonsense will stop. ESPN and the NFL were complicit in this outside the lines report so easily coming out after the Brady ruling. I am a huge Pats fan but this league stinks, the Pats are being signaled out for success and if you think other teams don’t do some of these things or worse you are delusional. And Florio thank God you remain objective and just present the facts. This site is the only one I go to for NFL news.

  60. Pete Rose, Barry Bonds, A-Rod, Bud Selig, Bernie Madoff, Bill Clinton, Silvio Berlusconi, Richard Nixon and many other serial liars all believe you, nothing to see here Pats right?

  61. C’mon people, let’s just get to the truth, the Pats have tiny people living in the heads of every other team. That’s how they get their information. Now get on your unicorns and fly outta here.

  62. captainspangled says:

    “We don’t know where these former players and team staff members are coming up with this stuff!”

    lolololol.

    ____________

    These former players and team members are not Ex-Patriots as you imply. Duh! They are members of teams that lost to the Patriots. And they offer no actual evidence, just suspicion. The only known ex-employee is Matt Walsh who admitted he lied. That is why the newspaper had to print an apology. The smear campaign is in full operation. Perhaps, now, however, the Patriots can find a way to sue. Only in the courts, where actual evidence is required, will the Patriots prevail.

  63. I swear that if this goes to the US Supreme Court and they exonerated Brady & Pats there will STILL be those that will claim they were paid off. Same folks who were sooo convinced that if this was taken to Federal Court the truth would come out.

    Well as it turns out, it did. There was no credible evidence. Berman immediately divined this was a scam and, in what words were available to him from a legal standpoint, told the NFL exactly what he saw here. YOU GOT NOTHING!

    But please, feel free to keep digging, and looking foolish. While your at it, take a look at your team if you have the morality and integrity to do so.

  64. “And yes it was illegal prior to 06. The NFL just didn’t think that someone would have been so brazen as what the Pat’s did.”

    Uh wrong. It not illegal until the league sent the memo making it so after the 2006 season.

    And multiple teams sideline taped before that so you better look in the mirror because multiple former head coaches admitting doing so including Jimmy Johnson.

  65. Stealing signals was not “legal” before the memo came out. The league didn’t think they had to tell teams not to steal in the name of good sportsmanship and basic human values.

    Everyone knows from a very young age that stealing is wrong. Apparently Belichick and Patriot fans were raised with zero values.

  66. LOL. ESPN what a joke.

    1) Taping signals is legal.
    2) The Pats taped from the wrong spot on the field..40 feet away and they were good.
    3) The Pats included audio in their taping, which was not kosher.

    They paid a fine and accepted their punishment for taping in the wrong spot. Keep in mind, every team in the league tapes what they were taping. By the way…this happened almost a decade ago.

    There. I just did a better job of “reporting” than any clown in the history of ESPN.

  67. Gee, I wonder if that shady secretly-Pats-fan-created your team cheats site will update to include these new instances of New England cheating. Especially that part where they sent the minimum-wage guys in to steal the other team’s play sheets!

    I wouldn’t hold my breath.

  68. “Also, a Patriots intern was seen sprinting from the scene of the Hindenburg disaster, according to several anonymous sources probably.” – ESPN

  69. So, this is has been going on since 2000. And you are telling me not a single former Patriots player, NOT ONE, ha ever come forward to substantiate any of this?

    C’mon, man! Just look at the headlines on PFT over the last few years. Heck, the last few weeks! You all know how disgruntled players like to cast shade on the teams that cut/traded them!

    And yet, not a single former Patriots player in 15 years has come forward and validated any of this?

    It seems “more probable than not” that Goodell and ESPN, having just been humiliated in public by Judge Berman, are looking for some payback.

  70. Why werent the Jets punished when they were caught taping in Foxboro during a 2006 playoff game vs the Pats?

  71. imodan says:
    Sep 8, 2015 10:56 AM

    Oh I’m begging you! Show me a quote of Berman implying balls were deflated.
    —————————————————–

    I’ll be happy to! I have to say though, it puzzles me that you Pats fans who seem to be such experts and know every word of every transcript somehow missed this big one.

    Berman to Kessler: “It looks like they deflated the game balls? Why would either one of them do that without Mr. Brady’s consent?”

    Not only does he “imply” he pretty much states that they deflated. And of course, we know what comes next, Kessler’s hilarious statement that if anything the ball boy would’ve acted on his own for the “good” of his QB. Really?

    Hope that clears things up and satisfies that big begging urge of yours.

  72. Hey truck…if Fox news is to the GOP what ESPN is to the NFL…then finish it up with what every other news network (CNN, MSNBC, Vox, etc) is to the DNC. Silliness.

  73. Love my WWNFL Bread and Circus’! Cheater Patsies skate free again, a crappy Thursday Night Football product, false so called “parity” since there isn’t enough good QB’s being developed. So it’s the same dang teams in the playoffs over and over since 2004 after 5 Head and Tommy Boy’s collective whining procured the modern day “all offense no defense allowed” rule changes.

    Wooyeah WWNFL, I love it!

    Just gimme my spreads (and popcorn) already as I watch this faux league unfold the 2015 season. All I care about.

  74. warotto9 says:
    Sep 8, 2015 10:31 AM

    Robert Kraft took his punishment and shut up because he knew every owner in the league was just waiting to expose all of the Patriot’s cheating and Goodell told him to take his punishment quietly and he would make it go away, but after Brady got his ruling overturned it’s now open season on the Patriots. Every story of them cheating is going to come out now. It’s been covered up for years, but everyone around the league knew about it which is why they came down so hard on something that seemed as innocuous as deflating footballs. Every owner in the league was sick of the Patriots playing by their own set of rules and it had to end. Brady should have shut up and taken his punishment just like Kraft did, because now every story will come out and the entire Patriot legacy will be destroyed. Nobody outside of New England believes these liars anymore.
    ********************************************
    warotto9, I think you just hit this puppy square on the nose !!! Multiple statements and accusations all coming out at once? Detailed statements from former Pat coaching staff and employees? There must have been some sort of agreement in place demonstrated by Kraft initially rolling over so quickly and taking the penalties handed down by Vincent. With Brady getting off after taking his case to court, it now seems like a play of “Scorched Earth” is going on. There is a tremendous barrage of detailed accusations and statements coming out of the closet. I still want to hear from the two dismissed ballboys……………………………..better get out your hip-boots along with your popcorn. lol

  75. Its amusing reading the comments where every pats fan feels the need to defend the cheating ways of the patriots. You got your titles, now move on, that loud noise you hear is the karma train roaring down the tracks.

  76. So now Pats fans want us to believe Spygate was all a figment of our imaginations…you guys have no shame.

    Enjoy the last few years of your run.

  77. ESPN is an NFL shill and this “OTL Report” is bunk. Most laughable moment today was when Golic asked Goodell if the ball and locker room attendants were suspended at the league’s request. Goodell denied the league had anything to do with it. Golic left it there without asking why the league didn’t seek their suspension as the league determined that they had deflated the footballs in the Wells Report. Duh?

  78. Wow. There sure are a lot of blind, deaf and dumb Pats fans….. The Patriots are a great franchise, with a great coach and a great QB. But they have gathered information on opponents in ways that surpassed what is ethical.

  79. Now Pats fans are telling us the NFL and ESPN are out to get the Pats. What next? FOX News? Cartoon Network? HGTV? Your team cheats! Live with it.

  80. haha! i called it last week! i love how NE fans are changing from “nuh uh!” to “well, it was legal, then!” and all kinds of other excuses are coming out of the woodwork. love it. i hope it gets deeper and deeper and those titles get stripped.

  81. “Also, a Patriots intern was seen sprinting from the scene of the Hindenburg disaster, according to several anonymous sources probably.” – ESPN
    ———————————————————-

    Now that’s funny! haha

  82. I have to give it to the NE fan base on at least one thing, they have an unlimited capacity to defend, deflect and deny any and all charges against them.

    No doubt they cheated and its simply too bad Rodger threw away the Spygate evidence but when you consider how much money is being bet on those Superbowls that the Patriots won and did not deserve, then you can begin to understand why Rodger didn’t release the evidence. The NFL’s liablity to Las Vegas could only be calculated in the billions.

  83. If you read he article, you would note that the Pats brought in ex-players and had them watch their illegal tapes to verify their interpretation of the signals were accurate. Players have come forward, they just remained anonymous as they don’t want to be labeled as “whistle blowers”. Why do you think so many declined to comment on the story? Why wouldn’t they back the patriots if the patriots weren’t doing something wrong? They kept the circle tight, so it’s not surprise many players didn’t know, but former Pats employee who became head coach of the Jets did whistle blow, that’s how it came out.

    Also, why did they have their cameramen disguise themselves and lie about why they were taping what they were taping if it was merely a matter of being in the wrong location to tape? Wouldn’t a “Oh, I thought this was the right section, my bad, I’ll move” response be a whole lot easier than covering up team logos and pretending to be with NFL films?

    They were told to top cheating in 2006 and 2007, they kept doing it until 2008…and would have (and did in other ways) kept cheating had they not been caught redhanded.

  84. I love the Pats apologists here. They clearly have been cheating since Belicheat took over. Everyone knows it. It doesn’t make Goodell any good at his job, but everyone knows it.

  85. Sounded very similar to Hillary’s response to her e-mail fiasco. And Pats apologists sound much like Hillary sycophants. History will treat neither very well.

  86. Pats fans are going through the five stages of grief per Kubla Ross. The first stage is shock/denial, some people never move beyond this stage. It appears most Pat fans could get stuck in this stage.

    The Pats are unrepentant cheaters period end of story.

  87. Keep whining and making excuses people. When your the king of the mountain people try to push you off. Its very flattering to the Patriots that all some of you can do is cry about how good they are and make excuses. Teams like the Colts need to pay more attention to getting linemen who can block or stop the run or not waste first round picks on players like Trent Richardson rather than an underinflated football. I hope all of you enjoying another winning season the Patriots are going to have. You can’t win the SB every year but they will make the playoffs again. So go get yourself a box of Kleenex and a pacifier if you don’t like it. LOL And get a life!

  88. Once again, the Entertainment and Self Promotion Network has shown clearly which teat from which they suckle from.

    Did they EVER retract the number of footballs that were severely under inflated or are they just going to stick with the 11-12 lie?

  89. ESPN continues to embarrass themselves however their bread is being buttered by their de facto ownership, the NFL. One wonders if they realize that the league will dump them like a bad case of diarrhea when the time comes to leave them holding the bag.

  90. I see a lot of people complaining about the destroying of the tapes. What exactly are you expecting to see that has any differing affect on anything. The guy filmed the signals and the owned up to it. What do the tapes do for anyone?

  91. Ever wonder why ex players don’t blow whistles on all this cheating? I’d think by now there should be dozens of ex players lining up for TMZ$ for a tell-all. Does the NFL have a mafia like grip on friends & families? Afraid they will end up like Vince Foster?

    If the pats are as evil as some think it should be easy peasy to get folks to spill. There are plenty of players that were dumped by the pats that would love to give us the straight dope. or perhaps everyone is worried about how deep this goes.

  92. @rushmore86,

    No, taping was NOT legal before 2006. That is one of the many bits of misinformation Pats loyalists have leaked.

    That’s right *shocker*. While the Pats and their fans have accused others of muddying the waters with lies and conjecture, they have done the same with both Spygate and Deflategate.

  93. this may be the story that ultimately kills ESPN The Magazine, which sucks up a lot of headcount there and is just barely surviving as is.

  94. Gotta love the timing of this.
    Brady cleared to play/ suspension pulled
    Season opener in two days.

    Asterisk on Pats Nation. Your franchise is so angelic- don’t worry about this or any future reports.

  95. nevyn49 says:
    Sep 8, 2015 2:07 PM
    @rushmore86,

    No, taping was NOT legal before 2006. That is one of the many bits of misinformation Pats loyalists have leaked.

    That’s right *shocker*. While the Pats and their fans have accused others of muddying the waters with lies and conjecture, they have done the same with both Spygate and Deflategate.
    —–
    Then you’ll have no problem citing chapter & verse on this rule.

  96. Lying….. cheaters!

    Lying…. cheaters!

    Lying…. cheaters!

    The patriots AND the NFL owners better prepare to hear these chants rain down on the cheaters whenever they visit an opponent stadium this fall.

  97. Can the NFL strip the Patriots of any of their titles?
    I doubt it, so cut the BS already and let’s play football and stop all this nonsense.

    Signed,
    A Ravens fan who doesn’t care for the Patriots but knows a pile of poop when he sees it!

  98. Mike Florio,
    Can you please shed any light on what the rules were on filming prior to 2006 as well as 2008 when the punishment was handed down for “spygate”? I’ve heard that prior to 2008 it was legal to film the opposing coaches signals from certain locations in the stadium as long as whatever was filmed was not used during the game it was filmed in, and prior to 2006 there really were no rules against filming period as long as the footage from a certain game wasn’t used in that game. Is that true? If not, what were the rules??

  99. restoreintegritytonfl says:
    Sep 8, 2015 2:39 PM

    Lying….. cheaters!

    Lying…. cheaters!

    Lying…. cheaters!

    The patriots AND the NFL owners better prepare to hear these chants rain down on the cheaters whenever they visit an opponent stadium this fall.

    ————-

    A) Why is that worse then any former chants at road games that the Patriots have endured in their long run of success.

    B) Who will be left to chant after the home team is losing by 30 after the first half.

  100. nevyn49 says:
    Sep 8, 2015 2:07 PM

    @rushmore86,

    No, taping was NOT legal before 2006. That is one of the many bits of misinformation Pats loyalists have leaked.

    That’s right *shocker*. While the Pats and their fans have accused others of muddying the waters with lies and conjecture, they have done the same with both Spygate and Deflategate.

    ————-

    It’s still legal to film the opponents sideline from other vantage points in the stadium as far as I am aware. Could be wrong, as I can’t find the rule.

  101. It’s bad when the network in your back yard doesn’t believe your crap. At least Brady feels bad for the deflator and his buddy for being fired over nothing… To much smoke for no fire… i Dont recall the steelers in the 70’s (winner of 4 in 6 years) or the niners or cowboys having anything close to this called into question when they were winning all the time…. A joke of a franchise…

  102. nepatri0ts says:
    Sep 8, 2015 1:54 PM

    I see a lot of people complaining about the destroying of the tapes. What exactly are you expecting to see that has any differing affect on anything. The guy filmed the signals and the owned up to it. What do the tapes do for anyone?

    ———-

    Exactly. The only reason people complain about it is because the media outlets and the public wanted access to the tapes/documents etc. However, it would have shown that the Patriots were filming signals, probably from 2000 to 2007 at every single game. What was Goodell supposed to do with the tapes if he didn’t destroy them? Give them back to the Patriots? Show them publicly for all teams to see? None of those are good options.

    I will agree that he could have provided an inventory of what was found, but it would have probably just shown they stole signals from every team they played against. If you assume that, why does it matter that he destroyed them?

  103. The pats haters just couldn’t take this last Super Bowl win. The fashion they won it in, the fake deflategate scandal, Brady being told he sucked at the beginning of the year then getting revenge just made people go insane to new levels.

  104. This is actually the full story of Spygate. Goodell swept it under the rug, but he had the evidence. Goodell got nothing in Deflategate in return for hiding the Spygate evidence, he obviously is set on taking down Brady and Bellichek for their cheating at this point.

    Brady will retire this year with injuries and scandal….kind of like Lance Armstrong. However, Brady can’t get testicular cancer, because he has none.

  105. ESPN is so East Coast bias that it is downright pathetic. So if an east coast team and it’s fans to whine about them is a joke….sorry if they just said the truth….Matter of fact most of you are the same individuals who would love to put an an asterisk behind Barry Bonds name, and would place Tom Brady on a pedestal……..hypocrites.

  106. Needless to say hat as an Eagles fan, it expains one of our Super Bowl losses. I would rather go winless in 100 Super Bowl years than win a single one and having the sad reputation the Pats now have. This reputation will never go away. Any future Super Bowl wins are tainted untill the owner sells the team and every single individual from management is gone. Fly Eagles Fly but at least we fly straight.

  107. Imagine the level of cheating that must have occurred two Super Bowls ago, when the Seahawks absolutely destroyed the Broncos.

    For a while, I thought the Seahawks were going to shut out the most prolific offense ever.

  108. swagger52 says:
    Sep 8, 2015 3:04 PM

    This is actually the full story of Spygate. Goodell swept it under the rug, but he had the evidence. Goodell got nothing in Deflategate in return for hiding the Spygate evidence, he obviously is set on taking down Brady and Bellichek for their cheating at this point.

    Brady will retire this year with injuries and scandal….kind of like Lance Armstrong. However, Brady can’t get testicular cancer, because he has none.

    ———————

    The story hasn’t changed since 2007. The Patriots taped signals and were punished. What exactly did Goodell sweep under the rug? Nothing that we didn’t already know about. He gave Belichick the max fine too.

    Brady won’t be retiring. He was just vindicated from the stupid deflategate BS which likely was just an excuse for Goodell to investigate the team. Too bad they didn’t find anything.

  109. I like how the Eagles, Rams and Panthers are going with the “the only way we coulda lost is cuz the other team was cheating” mantra. It’d be funny if it wasn’t so moronic.

  110. cowboy19 says:
    Sep 8, 2015 2:53 PM

    It’s bad when the network in your back yard doesn’t believe your crap. At least Brady feels bad for the deflator and his buddy for being fired over nothing… To much smoke for no fire… i Dont recall the steelers in the 70’s (winner of 4 in 6 years) or the niners or cowboys having anything close to this called into question when they were winning all the time…. A joke of a franchise…

    —————

    Even the Steeler QB admitted to taking steroids in those years. They weren’t called into question because the media wasn’t about exposing teams and athletes at that time. They wanted the athletes to talk to them, so they protected them. Same thing happened in baseball during the steroid years.

    If you start digging, I don’t think you are going to find fair play is on the forefront of most teams minds. It’s more win at all costs. Just ask the eye gouging linemen that are out there.

  111. As a Patriots fan I don’t care if they cheated yet I don’t think they did. I enjoyed every Super Bowl and AFC Championship to the max and I hope all of you did also! Thank You Bill Belichick for helping them win 4 Lombardi Trophies! LOL

  112. I’m not a Pats fan on any level, but this story just reeks of the NFL leaking whatever it had to to the WWL to get them back for beating them in court.

    I thought Brady should have been suspended for a game or two, but the judge overruled the NFL for letting Goodell play judge, jury and executioner and I don’t blame the judge at all.

    The league, ESPN just needs to let it go and move on to the season.

  113. And let’s be honest the shady attempted muligan that was Deflategate is the most compelling part of the newest batch of Spygate hysteria. Either that or the fact that the league is as culpable as anyone in the Patriots organization thanks to the intergrity loaded approach they took in response to it.

  114. This just reinforces how much in bed Goodall was with Kraft before this whole deflategate fiasco.

    Destroying evidence to stop the obvious rebuking of all of those Super Bowl trophies illegally earned by the Patriots.

    Because something like that is not only a black eye for the Patriots; but also the entire NFL. So Goodall was trying to protect the league image as a whole.

    Don’t get me wrong; I don’t agree with what Goodall did by destroying the evidence. But he was trying to protect the image of the NFL. But if he would have thought about it, exposing cheaters for who they are IS protecting the integrity of the NFL.

  115. When will all the hammering that the team and its fans have taken be enough ? Any fan of an NFL team would never want to experience this. I don”t care what people say or think. I will be a Patriot fan until the day I die. I’m pretty sure that we all feel this way… ESPN,the NFL,and especially Roger Goodell can all go pound sand…GO PATS!!!

  116. What history has proved is that the Rams, Panthers, and Eagles teams that made it to the super bowl versus the Patriots were good but not that good.

    None of them won anything after that game.

  117. Now that Tom’s been vindicated of the Goddell “Which Hunt” (wonder if jolly ole Roger is a Puritan at heart)….

    I predict that the Patriots will return to win SB50!

    At that point NE will have Ring #5… And truth be told, there’s no asterisks or footnotes (they’ve paid their penalties)… Nothing else to see here, time to move on…

    Must be tough for the Colts, Ravens, Jets and Bills to be playing the best coach/quarterback in the league…

    Looking for more Championship banners to be raised at Gillette!

  118. Where there’s smoke there’s fire. Yup…. The smoke is from the Patriots torching the whole NFL.

    Why did Goodell destroy the tapes? If wouldn’t hurt the Patriots. They were already punished. Maybe because the tapes showed other teams doing the same thing that the Patriots were doing. After all there’s one where the Jets where caught in the Patriots camera also filming the Patriots. Goodell press in his job bit more than he can chew. When the alleged Rams walk through surfaced he ” panicked” then word smith the Rams statement to save himself from the expanding fiasco which now included a politician which lobbies for Comcast which in turn has issue with the NFL. All this started with Goodell playing big cop and making the Patriots an example of how tough he is. It’s also a happy coincidence that he carries a grudge against BB for spurning him and the Jets.
    Goodell is like Javert in Les Mis. Hopefully his obsession with the Pats would be his downfall.

  119. Isn’t funny that there are former “disgruntled” employees from all NFL teams but you don’t hear anything about cheating and more cheating allegations from any other team than the Patriots?

  120. As soon as I read Unnamed sources I know it’s crap. This ain’t military secrets. Former Pats employees spewing to some hack at Espn??? No names??? Utter rubbish.

  121. Such a shame that espn and NFL release this report in such a timely fashion. Had Goodell won (which is as likely as an asteroid landing in Pats stadium) this wouldn’t have been published.

    I’m not a Pats fan, but I respect what they have accomplished. This entire tabloid media circus is a metaphor to what America has become as a whole: tax the achievers, tear down the success of those who exemplify all of what we strive to be, and maybe we should hand out trophies to my Jaguars for their lousy org for drafting poorly, and overpaying for lousy unproven free agents.

    One question: if the Pats cheated, why do they keep all these Super Bowl trophies?

    Exactly.

    Next tabloid story…

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