Thursday, May 22, 2008

Putting Spygate to Rest

I haven't addressed Spygate directly since my first post ever on my old blog. (Hell, the controversy was so new at that point that a proper name for it hadn't even been agreed upon) I don't think any events really warranted it because any logical person would realize that videotaping opponents signals crosses an arbitrary line in signal stealing. A stenographer could watch the opposing coach and describe, through writing, what they were seeing, then, if they really wanted to, could make a video of themselves recreating those exact signals. Yeah, it'd be a bit more work, but not much. That is not to say I don't understand the hate that comes the Patriots' way. If it were the New York Jets who got caught breaking the rules then I would be hollering about it too. It's sports you don't need to be logical about it; you can hate anyone for anything and that's fine, again, it's sports. Anyway the reason I'm bringing this up again is because I just came across a piece about the tapes Walsh handed over that was pretty much buried and never mentioned by any sports writer or pundit. Here is the link. If you're too lazy for that here is the pertinent excerpt (emphasis mine):

We don't know for sure whether more tapes ever existed in New England, or how these tapes were broken down and used. But after reviewing the material released by the league, this much is clear: We saw nothing in that video that would allow us as a scouting department to provide a team with an unfair advantage over an opponent.

Yes, preparation time was reduced and film study was streamlined, but not in a way that single-handedly turned the Patriots into one of the premier teams in the league. In the end, the Patriots' success comes down to having better players who make full use of the information provided to them.

So you know this isn't a bunch of yahoos this article was written by Scouts, Inc. A group comprised of mostly former scouts who scout games and player for ESPN so these guys know what they are talking about. Anyway, this closes the book on Spygate for me. When actual scouts say that the "cheating" merely streamlined the scouting process and didn't give a team an unfair advantage then I don't really need to here anything else. Oh, and if you try to play the "it doesn't matter if they got an advantage, they broke the rules" card with me then you clearly have no idea what I'm about (look at my list in the right hand sidebar).

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