SportsCenter & OTL Bringing Back Spygate (live, 9AM)

edmunddantes

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It is worth repeating. If people have learned nothing else from this, take this to heart what dcmissle and others have been pointing out.

Once a league investigation starts your team is screwed. You have no recourse as an owner or a coach. Your only hope is luck and the damage isn't too extensive. It's your only hope.

Unless you do something to stop the investigations before they start or show that it is going to be a big enough shit show that they better think long and hard about having the goods. Otherwise you are just pissing into the wind and waiting to say "thank you sir. May I have another?"
 

Stitch01

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The Pats are hopelessly outgunned in any sort of PR war. Doesn't mean PR couldn't use some upgrading or more proactivity, but they're going to get drowned out and I don't think having an independent PR firm blasting questionable calls is going to be allowed to stand very long. mueller idea is somewhat intriguing but i think you are giving too much credit to the league office buffoons.
 

RG33

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In honor of the incredibly lazy reporting done by ESPN and SI, can we at least have people that have admittedly not read the articles that this thread is about, not ask questions about the articles that they have admittedly not read?

With that said, I am all for Kraft going nuclear at this point, but he can't do it outwardly. There is way too much risk for him to be publicly admonishing Goodell or other owners or for even airing the league's dirty laundry. If Kraft did that, he'd be opening up himself to the 2/3 vote needed to get him kicked out of the National Football League. Doing simple things like, you know, pointing out that taping signals was not and is not illegal would be a great start. I actually love the idea of having the camera folks show them doing it Thursday night. It would couple as a learning moment as well as a giant "Fuck You" moment. Maybe having his PR staff put together a 3 minute clip of all of the different coaches/players/teams that have openly talked about taping signals would be another.

This really is a shitshow and it has totally taken away some of the excitement for the two shows this week and the opener. I hate that this is firing me up again, but alas, it is.

(although I secretly love that I knew I had 10-15 pages of SoSH to come back to and read ths evening!)
 

Kull

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dcmissle said:
I am saying be prepared.

I think nothing comes out of today's waste dump -- but if Kraft does not believe that they won't take another run at him, he is a lost cause. All the key people are still in place. The only reasonable assumption is that they WILL do so -- unless you have a sufficient deterrent.

Being in a reactive mode is a loser's game. The deck is stacked against the team legally and PR wise. The minute they open a case, you are done. You have to create the disincentive in advance.

I out two ideas on the table. A lawsuit is not one of fhem. In fact. It would only make things worse.
 
Bolded the important part. Not only still in place, but still smarting from the courtroom smackdown. And no reason not to spend every waking moment in search of some completely innocuous rule that ever team has ignored since Napoleon was a corporal - yet push it as a Patriots-only problem that perverts the integrity of the game. If we've learned nothing else from Ballghazi, it's that common sense and proportionality are long gone from today's NFL. Scandal #3, no matter how pathetic the foundation, is going to be existentially threatening for this franchise.
 

Salem's Lot

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Kull said:
 
Bolded the important part. Not only still in place, but still smarting from the courtroom smackdown. And no reason not to spend every waking moment in search of some completely innocuous rule that ever team has ignored since Napoleon was a corporal - yet push it as a Patriots-only problem that perverts the integrity of the game. If we've learned nothing else from Ballghazi, it's that common sense and proportionality are long gone from today's NFL. Scandal #3, no matter how pathetic the foundation, is going to be existentially threatening for this franchise.
This. I don't know why any of us are even bothering to watch this league any more. This shit isn't going to stop until Belichick is banned from football & the banners are taken down. It really is WWE.
 

J.McG

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As others have suggested, the allegation of the Pats sneaking into the visiting team's locker room to steal play sheets doesn't pass the smell test.

Why would the opposing team just leave a play sheet lying unattended and out in the open like a discarded cup of Gatorade (unless of course they were trying to catch the Pats red-handed, which by all accounts never happened)? If you were the opposing offensive coordinator, wouldn't you be protecting that sheet with your life, particularly when you're on heightened alert inside Gillette stadium? How difficult would it be to just carry the play sheet with you out onto the field, or have someone else on your staff hold onto it? If you did suspect the Pats of stealing your play sheet, why not alert NFL game day operations immediately? It would be fairly difficult for a Patriots staffer to sneak in and out of an opponent's locker room undetected or unseen by security cameras.

It doesn't appear as though DVN Jr. & Wickersham bothered with any such follow-up questions, and instead were content with allowing anyone with a past grievance against the Pats to anonymously spew forth any & all half-baked cheating accusations without a shred of tangible evidence. It's worth remembering that ESPN's venerable OTL investigative unit are the same clowns that back in February tried to insinuate that the Patriots were cheating during the AFC Championship game by introducing an unapproved K-ball into play, when it was actually an NFL official attempting to steal a charity auction ball for his own profit.
 

soxhop411

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Salem's Lot said:
This. I don't know why any of us are even bothering to watch this league any more. This shit isn't going to stop until Belichick is banned from football & the banners are taken down. It really is WWE.
I gave up watching ESPN and NFLN. The league is a joke.
 

dcmissle

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I asked two questions about two articles I have not read because someone used the "d" word again -- defamation

Some of us have been playing whack-a-mole with defamation and its evil twin, libel, at least since the Wells Report was published. Not only are they the legal equivalent of Mt. Everest in their own right, but also there is the added problem of tying the statements to the NFL, or specific teams. assuming they are defamatory or libelous. Good luck with that.

The courts do not present a solution to this problem for these reasons and others.
 

soxhop411

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Bud Selig and David Stern are better commissioners than goodell. They both could probably run the NFL better too.
 

OnWisc

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At this point, if ESPN showed what it claimed was video evidence of Patriots employees stealing playbooks, I don't think it would elicit any follow up questions even if the footage was cartoon animation.
 

cornwalls@6

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What's very disconcerting to me is that there appears to be no adult in the room to put a stop to this fucking insanity, calm down and stabilize things. It's certainly not Goodell, and no elder statesman, greater good of the league owner or owners seem to exist anymore either. Feels a bit lawless in a way.
 

crystalline

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dcmissle said:
Being in a reactive mode is a loser's game. The deck is stacked against the team legally and PR wise. The minute they open a case, you are done. You have to create the disincentive in advance.

.
Bob Kraft is playing a losers' game and has been for 8 years. His PR in response to Spygate and DFG has been pathetic. Either be thinks public perception doesn't affect his business, or he's a loser.

As time goes on I lean increasingly towards the latter.

Hopefully Jonathan Kraft is better, and he gets more control as time goes on.
 

Kull

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cornwalls@6 said:
What's very disconcerting to me is that there appears to be no adult in the room to put a stop to this fucking insanity, calm down and stabilize things. It's certainly not Goodell, and no elder statesman, greater good of the league owner or owners seem to exist anymore either. Feels a bit lawless in a way.
 
It's been stated here in various ways, but it probably comes down to a version of Hanlon's Razor. Malice in the NFL office isn't driving the witch-hunts. It's unsated ego amongst the owners. Since 2000, Bob Kraft has hosted almost half the AFC Super Bowl parties and won a quarter of the Rings. A preponderance of the owners don't care what methods are used, so long as they have better chance at either - and the NFL minions know this.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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We should try to sting one of these media organizations. I bet with a little effort we could do it. Print some phony business cards and create a web site for a West Viginia private detective business. Then shop around some outrageous story like Ernie Adams hired us to try to get hookers to pick up opposing teams' junior coaches or interns and take pictures so they could blackmail them for playbooks. Figure out a way to set up a second shaky source, like a make believe ex con who says he was a pimp. I bet we could get someone to go with it and then watch the big outlets breathlessly report it.
 

CaptainLaddie

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MuppetAsteriskTalk said:
 
Yes, that's what I thought. Makes this quote pretty pathetic.
 
 
Geez I wonder if the Pats losing half their secondary to injury might have had something to do with it?
 

Also, they were losing by 4 at the half and lost by 3 at the end.

Heck of a job switching game plans!
 

TallManinOregon

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DennyDoyle'sBoil said:
We should try to sting one of these media organizations. I bet with a little effort we could do it. Print some phony business cards and create a web site for a West Viginia private detective business. Then shop around some outrageous story like Ernie Adams hired us to try to get hookers to pick up opposing teams' junior coaches or interns and take pictures so they could blackmail them for playbooks. Figure out a way to set up a second shaky source, like a make believe ex con who says he was a pimp. I bet we could get someone to go with it and then watch the big outlets breathlessly report it.
 
I love this... I can't help in any real way other than to reiterate how much of a tremendous idea it is, and offer a retweet when it all comes together...
 

GeorgeCostanza

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Bob Kraft is playing a losers' game and has been for 8 years. His PR in response to Spygate and DFG has been pathetic. Either be thinks public perception doesn't affect his business, or he's a loser.
As time goes on I lean increasingly towards the latter.
Seriously? You are increasingly leaning toward thinking Bob Kraft is a loser? I'm hoping this is at least a touch of hyperbole in this statement my friend.
 

GeorgeCostanza

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DennyDoyle said:
We should try to sting one of these media organizations. I bet with a little effort we could do it. Print some phony business cards and create a web site for a West Viginia private detective business. Then shop around some outrageous story like Ernie Adams hired us to try to get hookers to pick up opposing teams' junior coaches or interns and take pictures so they could blackmail them for playbooks. Figure out a way to set up a second shaky source, like a make believe ex con who says he was a pimp. I bet we could get someone to go with it and then watch the big outlets breathlessly report it.
Captain Janks of Howard stern fame has gotten on air live with them in the past pretending to be Brian Westbrook and Steve Bartman. It's not hard to fool them it seems.

Edit: link doesn't seem to be embedding. Google captain Janks ESPN
 

simplyeric

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notfar said:
Rather than file a defamation lawsuit for 10 million dollars, Kraft just needs to say "I will pay anyone at the NFL front office ten million dollars if they bring me proof that the NFL has been railroading my team."
That's also a great idea for a Kickstarter campaign...
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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I am a long-time New England Patriots fan who has rooted for them through bad times (Hart Lee Dykes was better in Tecmo Bowl than in real life) and good.   If these constant and unending accusations of cheating are the cost of success, I will take it.  Its way better than rooting for a losing team.
 

Section15Box113

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DeJesus Built My Hotrod said:
I am a long-time New England Patriots fan who has rooted for them through bad times (Hart Lee Dykes was better in Tecmo Bowl than in real life) and good.   If these constant and unending accusations of cheating are the cost of success, I will take it.  Its way better than rooting for a losing team.
This. 100% this.

Embrace the hate. It only stops when the winning does.
 

TheoShmeo

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I share the view that if being hated is the cost of winning, then bring on the hate.  The Yankees are hated for that reason, at least in part.  The Celtics and Canadiens of yore, too.
 
The thing that doesn't hang together is that the source of the hatred is, in large part, the perception that the winning is fueled by cheating.  That part does not have to be there.  What I mean is that people could hate the Pats out of a perception of arrogance or something else that doesn't go to whether their wins are tarnished.
 
That part of the hate is what's unfortunate. 
 
My Pats fandom stretches back to the Plunkett days, and I have seen a lot of high comedy from this once Charlie Brown style franchise.  Things are vastly different now, of course.  They are lucky enough to have an owner who is anything but a loser.  4 SB wins, 7 SB appearances, and a nice facility (albeit one that is lousy on the crowd noise part) all attest to that, even if he could have handled certain PR aspects better.  These are the wildly good times and when they go back to the middle of the pack or worse, I think we will all miss being hated.
 
But with that reality fully appreciated, it remains unfortunate that the primary basis for the hate is the perception that their wins were not gained fairly.  Still, I'll do that deal all day long.  But that doesn't change that I wish the hate was purely rooted in good old fashioned jealousy or even arrogance.  Hell, I loved that other teams could not stand Red Auerbach's smugness and victory cigars!
 

lexrageorge

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crystalline said:
Bob Kraft is playing a losers' game and has been for 8 years. His PR in response to Spygate and DFG has been pathetic. Either be thinks public perception doesn't affect his business, or he's a loser.

As time goes on I lean increasingly towards the latter.

Hopefully Jonathan Kraft is better, and he gets more control as time goes on.
Not sure what you would expect to be done differently for Spygate or Deflategate.  His hands were tied in both cases.  
 
This time, however, the gloves should come off if the allegations in the ESPN report become a thing.  
 

jsinger121

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D&C just had Rich Hanley from Quinnipiac on. My god is he an idiot with regards to this new ESPN garbage.
 

jsinger121

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I think Kraft should buy the entire team and coaches this shirt to wear during their media availability throughout this season. 
 
 

Ed Hillel

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CaptainLaddie said:
 
Also, they were losing by 4 at the half and lost by 3 at the end.
Heck of a job switching game plans!
The other issue is that the Pats hadn't played Carolina in over 2 years. Oh, and btw they had switched coaches in that span.

So apparently we have to believe that:

1. Carolina never changed their signals from 2001 to 2003; and,

2. Despite not having changed their signals from 2001 to 2003, they did so at halftime of the Superbowl.

Not to mention Spygate was about taping DEFENSIVE signals. The offense has something called a huddle, and the Pats offense had a better second half than first.

Carolina, you lost. Get over it.
 

Ed Hillel

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cornwalls@6 said:
If this is true, and it took Florio all of 12 hours or so nail it down, how the fuck does it get past the editors of a major media outlet like SI? I hope he starts digging in on all the shit that was published today, with the same skepticism he eventually went after the league with regarding deflategate.


http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2015/09/08/si-com-story-on-pats-has-compelling-but-inaccurate-anecdote/
Of course he's right, reporters tweet out the information pregame. Even more damning is Florio's new piece that shows Martz's statement hasn't changed a lick since 2007. He found this with a simple Google search.

http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2015/09/08/martzs-2008-statement-hasnt-changed/
 

( . ) ( . ) and (_!_)

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The Pats should come out and say that yes they are still takin defensive signals. Because one its not illegal if you do it from the right place and two it will change the focus back to what spy gate was about and turn the spotlight away from all the other fluff in that article.

Yea I know defensive a players now have speakers on helmets so signals arnt needed. But the point of saying it is to throw it back in espns face and try to control a story.

Then they need to sign Tebow, Jeter and Lebron.
 

Jed Zeppelin

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Funny you mentioned Jeter. The team's only recourse at this point is to wait long enough for people to stop calling it cheating and start calling it Mystique and Aura. Florio got halfway there.

The Colts are our Twins, obviously.
 

Otis Foster

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I don't have time to go back through the full thread, so aii for repetition, but I fully expect an attempt to launch a full blown investigation over the post-2002 allegations, and an eventual initiative by some owners to vacate some or all of the NEP championships.

I absolutely agree with DCM's statement that this is not going to end. Kraft needs to take the initiative aggressively. Time to step out of the clubbiness of the Gazillionaire owners circle and go Al Davis, up to and including threats to spill all of the NFL's dirty laundry.

Agreed, Jonathan?
 

djbayko

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Ed Hillel said:
Of course he's right, reporters tweet out the information pregame. Even more damning is Florio's new piece that shows Martz's statement hasn't changed a lick since 2007. He found this with a simple Google search.

http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2015/09/08/martzs-2008-statement-hasnt-changed/
I assumed the implication was that someone in the NFL massaged Martz' statement *before* it was released. That's the only way it makes sense. Of course anyone can look at the released statement and see it hasn't changed.

I may be wrong, but if that is the true implication, then Florio hasn't cracked anything here. Of course, I'm not saying the implication is necessarily true either.
 

Ed Hillel

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djbayko said:
I assumed the implication was that someone in the NFL massaged Martz' statement *before* it was released. That's the only way it makes sense. Of course anyone can look at the released statement and see it hasn't changed.

I may be wrong, but if that is the true implication, then Florio hasn't cracked anything here. Of course, I'm not saying the implication is necessarily true either.
And where has Martz been the last 8 years?
 

Joshv02

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Ed Hillel said:
The other issue is that the Pats hadn't played Carolina in over 2 years. Oh, and btw they had switched coaches in that span.

So apparently we have to believe that:

1. Carolina never changed their signals from 2001 to 2003; and,

2. Despite not having changed their signals from 2001 to 2003, they did so at halftime of the Superbowl.

Not to mention Spygate was about taping DEFENSIVE signals. The offense has something called a huddle, and the Pats offense had a better second half than first.

Carolina, you lost. Get over it.
Its also was not illegal to look at the other sideline that is in the view of 80,000 people and write down what you see or hear - including signals.
I can hire someone to read your lips, write down your hand movements, etc.  I just can't videotape them (from certain locations, etc.).
There is nothing wrong with the Patriots knowing what your signals are per se
 

Omar's Wacky Neighbor

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jsinger121 said:
D&C just had Rich Hanley from Quinnipiac on. My god is he an idiot with regards to this new ESPN garbage.
I was getting the boys off to school, so I missed a lot, but did he say that it's  possible the league might vacate some of the SB wins?  Sounded like one of D&C&m called him on it, and his response was "I didnt say they WOULD, I said it's POSSIBLE!"?
 

MuppetAsteriskTalk

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Otis Foster said:
I don't have time to go back through the full thread, so aii for repetition, but I fully expect an attempt to launch a full blown investigation over the post-2002 allegations, and an eventual initiative by some owners to vacate some or all of the NEP championships.

I absolutely agree with DCM's statement that this is not going to end. Kraft needs to take the initiative aggressively. Time to step out of the clubbiness of the Gazillionaire owners circle and go Al Davis, up to and including threats to spill all of the NFL's dirty laundry.

Agreed, Jonathan?
 
Yup. I got my ass reamed in here a month ago for saying that it was time for Kraft to go scorched earth. But I was correct then and you are correct now.
 

Oil Can Dan

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( . ) ( . ) and (_!_) said:
The Pats should come out and say that yes they are still takin defensive signals. Because one its not illegal if you do it from the right place and two it will change the focus back to what spy gate was about and turn the spotlight away from all the other fluff in that article.

Yea I know defensive a players now have speakers on helmets so signals arnt needed. But the point of saying it is to throw it back in espns face and try to control a story.

Then they need to sign Tebow, Jeter and Lebron.
I thought spygate was all about taping defensive signals from the sideline and bringing the recorder into the locker room at halftime. If they had been recording from the stands or press box, who cares?
 

Erik Hanson's Hook

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DrewDawg said:
You ever think some FA might say "Fuck it, I'll go to Team X instead, I don't want to be accused of cheating"?
 
I don't think so, but I guess I could see that pop up in "recruiting".
 
This has also crossed my mind. I'm not sure what the answer is.
 

Average Reds

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Ed Hillel said:
Of course he's right, reporters tweet out the information pregame. Even more damning is Florio's new piece that shows Martz's statement hasn't changed a lick since 2007. He found this with a simple Google search.

http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2015/09/08/martzs-2008-statement-hasnt-changed/
 
But I was assured that a felony had been committed ....
 
MuppetAsteriskTalk said:
 
Yup. I got my ass reamed in here a month ago for saying that it was time for Kraft to go scorched earth. But I was correct then and you are correct now.
 
You were not correct then and it's not correct now.
 
To the extent that you "got your ass reamed" a month ago, it's because you would not listen to those who indicated that Kraft had already closed the door to such action when he declined to challenge his punishment in May.
 
I think we all understand the emotional appeal of what you are suggesting.  (Hell, I vented the same thing yesterday, while noting that it wasn't going to happen.)  But while the ESPN story is a recycled smear job, it's not evidence of a conspiracy against the Pats.  And without that evidence, Kraft won't go scorched earth.
 
This doesn't mean that additional disclosures won't change things.  But as many here predicted, much of what came out yesterday is simply inaccurate gossip.  (Which serves the purpose of the NFL and cannot be tied to them.)  So we're not there yet.
 

dcdrew10

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DrewDawg said:
You ever think some FA might say "Fuck it, I'll go to Team X instead, I don't want to be accused of cheating"?
 
I don't think so, but I guess I could see that pop up in "recruiting".
 
 
Erik Hanson's Hook said:
 
This has also crossed my mind. I'm not sure what the answer is.
 
Some player might not come to the Pats because of this, but that would indicate that he doesn't have the myopic focus that Belichick would want in a player on the team and in the end it probably wouldn't work out. 
 

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Oil Can Dan said:
I thought spygate was all about taping defensive signals from the sideline and bringing the recorder into the locker room at halftime. If they had been recording from the stands or press box, who cares?
You and I know that. The average NFL fan does not.
The point of the pats coming out and saying yes we are still doing it from the pressbox is to one part to set people straight one part to change the dialogue and one part because I'm just angry and want them to do something.
 

jsinger121

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baghdadjamie said:
I fucking love Minihane. He just single handedly destroyed some reporter from Miami on the D&C show.
 
That was great radio. George Diaz another uninformed moron.
 

slowstrung

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dcmissle said:
I asked two questions about two articles I have not read because someone used the "d" word again -- defamation
Some of us have been playing whack-a-mole with defamation and its evil twin, libel, at least since the Wells Report was published. Not only are they the legal equivalent of Mt. Everest in their own right, but also there is the added problem of tying the statements to the NFL, or specific teams. assuming they are defamatory or libelous. Good luck with that.
The courts do not present a solution to this problem for these reasons and others.
But that's a two way street, right? So people in the Pats' organization can make up innuendos and suspicions about Goodell and his cronies without fear of legal reprisal themselves, correct?
 

Average Reds

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slowstrung said:
But that's a two way street, right? So people in the Pats' organization can make up innuendos and suspicions about Goodell and his cronies without fear of legal reprisal themselves, correct?
 
This misses the point spectacularly, because if the Pats smeared Goodell, he would launch an investigation, conclude that it was more probable than not that the smear came from the Pats and issue severe punishment and there wouldn't be a damn thing the Pats could do about it.  Hell, if the smears were attributed to "an anonymous member of the Patriots front office" that's all Goodell would need.
 
Unless you are protected by the CBA, the power dynamic of the NFL is all one way - the league holds all the cards.  Just ask Mickey Loomis and Sean Payton.
 

Ed Hillel

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jsinger121 said:
 
That was great radio. George Diaz another uninformed moron.
These mouth-breathers go on, scream about how the Pats cheat, and whenever they get asked for specifics/evidence, they freak out. In this case, he hung up.
 

dcdrew10

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The Patriots have done a little push back on the league; Per Florio the Pats are claiming they have asked for Jarstremski and McNally to be reinstated, despite what the Ginger Hammer said yesterday. Hopefully this is the beginning of them being a bit more aggressive in the PR war.
 
What are the criteria for a media badge at Gillette? At what point could someone from ITP qualify as "media"? Would someone have to volunteer for a lobotomy and present their medical records? I could imagine someone from ITP asking Belichick some questions that are actually relevant to football without being "Bill what is your game plan for next week? What is the status of (insert injured player name)? At some point people are going to need actual reporting and intelligent insight into what the Patriots do on the field.