It seemed like a fight possibly was coming between the Patriots and Texans over Nick Caserio, and the gloves officially have been dropped.
The Patriots have filed tampering charges against the Texans, according to Adam Schefter of ESPN.
The charges relate to Houston’s attempt to hire Caserio to be the team’s next General Manager. Schefter notes that the NFL will commence an investigation, gathering information relevant to whether and to what extent the Texans communicated with Caserio absent permission from the Patriots to do so.
One potential source of information/evidence could be, in our view, last Thursday night’s ring ceremony at the home of Patriots owner Robert Kraft. Former Patriots executive Jack Easterby, now a key member of the Texans’ front office, attended the event. Communications between Easterby and Caserio could become proof of impermissible discussions regarding the job — especially since the job became vacant the very next day.
The league also will surely look at records of any phone calls or electronic communications between Caserio and Texans employees or intermediaries. Contact between Caserio’s agent and the Texans also become potentially relevant.
Even if the tampering charges prompt the Texans to abandon their pursuit of Caserio, the Texans could face punishment if it’s proven that they indeed talked to him about the job without permission from the Patriots to do so.