Pats lose 2 days of OTAs for violation of league policy

Over Guapo Grande

panty merchant
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Nov 29, 2005
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Per Howe in the Athletic — it wasn’t even meetings. It was “office hours” where players could drop in.
The rules infraction had nothing to do with on-field activity. Rather, the Patriots posted a schedule of voluntary special teams office hours to let players know when coaches would be available if the players were interested in dropping by for a meeting, according to a source. An NFLPA representative noticed the posted schedule during a routine visit to the facility and informed the team the schedule could give off the impression that the office hours could be mandatory.

Athletic
 

BaseballJones

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Oct 1, 2015
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So the Pats over the years have been penalized for the Ideal Gas Law being a thing, for the Browns not informing the Bengals that the Pats were filming for a docuseries they were doing, and now for something put on the team schedule as an optional meeting.

Sweet.
 

ZMart100

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The NFLPA is right to strictly police this. Particularly in a place like the NFL something optional can easily become expected. If teams want more contact they need to bargain for it in the CBA.
 

Spelunker

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Jul 17, 2005
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The NFLPA is right to strictly police this. Particularly in a place like the NFL something optional can easily become expected. If teams want more contact they need to bargain for it in the CBA.
Yeah, I'm fine with this. This isn't a random "league" rule, this is a collectively bargained labor issue.
 

streeter88

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There must be another shoe to drop in this affair. Agree with the above that rules must be followed. But very surprised they weren’t followed - this is not a new rule and none of the coaches involved are new.
 

Bowser

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Sep 27, 2019
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No that's not what I meant because that's not what he wrote.
I'm not saying you said that. I'm merely noting that both Pats' player reps happen to play special teams. So, yes, it could be that a representative of the NFLPA just happened to be visiting Foxboro on the day of the violation, or it could be that the two in-house player reps called the union on Judge. I understand this was NOT what was reported, but I think it's a viable theory nonetheless, particularly if Judge's reputation among some players in the building is as shitty as it is for many of us outside.
 

steveluck7

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There must be another shoe to drop in this affair. Agree with the above that rules must be followed. But very surprised they weren’t followed - this is not a new rule and none of the coaches involved are new.
I don’t know what other shoe. Based on the Howe report and other reporting I’ve seen / heard. This was an issue of posting “office hours” and that once the team was notified of the infractions / investigation, they cooperated and had no further violations
 

Cellar-Door

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I'm not saying you said that. I'm merely noting that both Pats' player reps happen to play special teams. So, yes, it could be that a representative of the NFLPA just happened to be visiting Foxboro on the day of the violation, or it could be that the two in-house player reps called the union on Judge. I understand this was NOT what was reported, but I think it's a viable theory nonetheless, particularly if Judge's reputation among some players in the building is as shitty as it is for many of us outside.
I mean when it doubt, it's definitely best to assume that the thing that was reported is cover for a conspiracy based on no facts except that you don't like a guy.
 

Bowser

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Sep 27, 2019
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Geez, tough crowd. Well, based on the fact that reporting on the subject -- and especially the early reporting -- has been pretty ambiguous. And the fact that even Curran, who seems to be offering the fullest picture, is far from dispositive. And the fact that the violations occurred on multiple days (3/1, 3/2 & 3/4), making it somewhat unlikely that they were discovered by a single NFLPA rep who just happened to be visiting Foxboro. And the fact that it's been widely reported (e.g., here) how Judge rubbed people the wrong way, was hated by Mac Jones, and frequently got blasted during practice by Belichick himself. And the fact that the Pats are unlikely to be fully candid in the details they provide the media. For all these reasons, I'm speculating that Cardona or Davis may have alerted the NFLPA to the violations on 3/1 and 3/2, triggering the rep visit on 3/4. But you're right ... I have no evidence.
 

cornwalls@6

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I mean, this whole thing is a double nothing burger with bacon and cheese. But people really think this was right to be policed like this? Fucking office hours being posted, that have nothing to do with practice or contact? Really?
 

Cellar-Door

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Aug 1, 2006
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I mean, this whole thing is a double nothing burger with bacon and cheese. But people really think this was right to be policed like this? Fucking office hours being posted, that have nothing to do with practice or contact? Really?
Probably, because teams have a long history of "voluntary" activities that are actually de-facto mandatory in violation of the CBA, and that's bullshit. The NFL owners and coaches are basically always looking for the chance to exploit the players just a bit more, which is why the NFLPA comes down hard on seemingly innocuous stuff.
 

joe dokes

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Probably, because teams have a long history of "voluntary" activities that are actually de-facto mandatory in violation of the CBA, and that's bullshit. The NFL owners and coaches are basically always looking for the chance to exploit the players just a bit more, which is why the NFLPA comes down hard on seemingly innocuous stuff.
The whole idea of any sort of mandatory stuff before training camp is arguably ridiculous. Other sports seem to get away fine without having a pre-training camp training camp.
 

Shelterdog

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Probably, because teams have a long history of "voluntary" activities that are actually de-facto mandatory in violation of the CBA, and that's bullshit. The NFL owners and coaches are basically always looking for the chance to exploit the players just a bit more, which is why the NFLPA comes down hard on seemingly innocuous stuff.
Nitpicking but I think it's a funnier issue than that. The coaches would have these guys practice 300 days a year, the players don't want to practice as much (it's more hours at the job, more chances for injury), so the owners give the players some concessions on practice time in lieu of other things -- like money better health care and fewer games-- and then you get this stuff where coaches are trying to circumvent the CBA with non voluntary voluntary pre training camp training camp because the coaches are perfectionist hardo dickheads
 

Van Everyman

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Practice time and preparation through the decades would be another subject that would be fascinating to hear Bill expound on in the memoir he'll never write.
 

dirtynine

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It is interesting to think about how much correlation there is between team success in the NFL (winning Super Bowls) and percentage of players in any given season who just voluntarily want to do more than the contractually have to, or work on team stuff during their own time. Maybe that’s a real edge the Pats exploited for a long time.
 
Aug 9, 2015
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It is interesting to think about how much correlation there is between team success in the NFL (winning Super Bowls) and percentage of players in any given season who just voluntarily want to do more than the contractually have to, or work on team stuff during their own time. Maybe that’s a real edge the Pats exploited for a long time.
I'd also be very interested to know the optimal amount of practice time the players actually think they need to perform their best. The fact that all of this has been the subject of collective bargaining has resulted in a very complicated, arcane set of rules with--it seems--the players trying to take back some control without a clear overall picture. Putting the focus there rather than on the bigger issues that affect player health and finances over the long term (to hijack Slater's recent comments a bit) also seems like a way for owners to say "look, we made concessions!" without that really meaningfully being the case.
 

joe dokes

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Practice time and preparation through the decades would be another subject that would be fascinating to hear Bill expound on in the memoir he'll never write.
Given his interest in the history of the league, and now that he is a big part of that history, I think there's a good chance he does write a memoir. He may not spill too many beans, or he may delay release until after he's dead, but I can't imagine that he will pass up the opportunity to have his 50 years of NFL experience committed to paper, somehow.