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Belicheat Gets Wrist Slapped

One draft choice isn't enough, even a first rounder.

And Belicheat himself should have been suspended for at least a few games.


( 63 comments — Leave a comment )
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Sep. 14th, 2007 07:14 am (UTC)
Well, you had to see it coming
A first rounder is a notable penalty, and the lack of it will be much more recognizable a few years from now than the coach not being there a few games. They'll make the playoffs either way, so the impact of those absences would really be inconsequential.

PS. Go Giants.
Sep. 14th, 2007 07:17 am (UTC)
I've seen some discussion of the suspension option. I certainly think a one or two game suspension is merited.

That said, how to keep him from being able to direct team operations in the run-up to games from his home or private meetings or whatever seems quite difficult. Short of that, I'm not sure a suspension would have been very meaningful -- somewhat disruptive to the team, doubtless, and then of course there's the principle of the thing.

Without any suspension, I was sure it'd be two draft picks. Just one does seem like a slap on the wrist.
Sep. 14th, 2007 07:32 am (UTC)
I think the $500,000 fine was more than a slap on the wrist. Plus it will cost them a 1st Round pick (or a 2nd & 3rd if they miss the playoffs). What amazes me is they got caught. You hear about this stuff happening, but you don't see blatant cheating like this very often. Well, unless you count the officiating in Superbowl XL.
Sep. 14th, 2007 09:26 am (UTC)
I disagree
I think the combination of a fine, plus the loss of a draft choice, is a good option for a penalty. This is new territory, after all, for the NFL to deal with as far as ruling against.

Just a fine would not have been enough...fine plus a draft choice sends a message. Adding a suspension on top of it might have been a bit of overkill. Bill, and other coaches, are now going to be strongly disinclined in trying this nonsense again and that's what counts.
Sep. 14th, 2007 09:29 am (UTC)
Indeed. The punishment suffers from the irony of being just strong enough to be clearly too little.

Belichick should have been suspended -- he'd still be able to coach against SD if he appealed the suspension (and for that game, I guess he'd have had to). Would've been nice.

Don't mind me, though -- I'm still moderately bitter about The Great Snow Job.

Sep. 15th, 2007 03:33 am (UTC)
Nice to know I'm not the only one still bitter about that. ^_^
(no subject) - leprojet - Sep. 15th, 2007 05:45 am (UTC) - Expand
Sep. 14th, 2007 10:51 am (UTC)
I can't help but wonder if it had been any other team or coach if the punishment would have been more severe.
Sep. 14th, 2007 01:24 pm (UTC)
I actually think the punishment was much more severe than if it had been, say, the Oakland Raiders or Arizona Cardinals. My guess is it would have only cost them a 4th round pick or so... I mean, the NFL emphasizes how it's a competitive league, how much can you punish a team that can't even win WITH cheating?

I think a lot of people underestimate how huge a first-round draft pick is. Keep in mind, the Patriots managed to snag Randy Moss with a FOURTH-ROUND pick. A first round pick is a pretty huge penalty for the Pats doing something that every team does (ie why do you think coaches cover their mouths when they talk into their mics?). Every team cheats to some degree, it just appears the Pats either went further than others or just didn't hide it well.
Sep. 14th, 2007 10:53 am (UTC)
Not Enough?
Brandon Merriweather, Vince Wilfork, Laurence Maroney, Benjamin Watson, Ty Warren and Richard Seymore were all first round picks by the Pats (maybe he cheated by watching his draft picks in college too). Losing a first round pick is far from a light punishment. You can blame Bill for being arrogant and stubborn enough to film in front of the league official (rather than hide it like the rest of the league coaches), you can even say he's somewhat mean, but you cannot say he has no honor. Now Mangini on the other hand.....
Sep. 14th, 2007 05:33 pm (UTC)
Re: Not Enough?
Rex Grossman, Michael Haynes, Cedric Benson, Greg Olsen and Tommie Harris were all 1st round picks by the Bears. Only one of them is a true good player.

This might hurt the Pats, but let's not overstate the value of first round picks; for every Manning there's a Leaf.
Re: Not Enough? - pilgrim23 - Sep. 17th, 2007 01:02 am (UTC) - Expand
Sep. 14th, 2007 11:04 am (UTC)
I'm curious how you would be responding to this whole issue if it were the Jets and not the Pats. :)
Sep. 14th, 2007 12:30 pm (UTC)
Performance Enhancing
Not having followed the story a great deal I was surprised not to see a suspension. A player caught cheating via performance enhancing drugs is going to be suspended, seems coaches cheating should receive similar treatment, but that's just me I guess...

Anyway, go Vikes!
Sep. 14th, 2007 01:19 pm (UTC)
Loosing a first round pick can really hurt, but I agree give him a game or two to think about what he's doing to the game itself.

I wonder now, how many times he's tried this?
Sep. 14th, 2007 01:32 pm (UTC)
How many times
I would imagine that (like every other coach) he's been doing this since day one. Shananhan said in an interview this past summer that by the end of the first quarter (using former FBI decoders, sign language readers, lip readers, and other means) that he would know the defensive play calling. The NFL sent a memo out to all teams on Thursday telling them that video equipment would no longer be allowed...or rather that it would now be enforced. Belicek was just to stubborn to listen.
Re: How many times - mazerrakhm - Sep. 14th, 2007 03:38 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: How many times - pilgrim23 - Sep. 14th, 2007 04:16 pm (UTC) - Expand
Sep. 14th, 2007 01:22 pm (UTC)
I'd stated at Ran's that a fine was meaningless. But I dont care how much you make, half a million has got to hurt.
I do agree that he should have gotten a game or two suspension. A first rounder was more than I thought they'd get. Its a bit more than a slap on the wrist, but I'd have like to seen him sat down.
Sep. 14th, 2007 01:48 pm (UTC)
This Sucks
(re-posted, many bad typos)
This is disappointing, I must say, as a Pats fan that spends a fair amount of money each year attending games, parking, 8.00 beers, etc. The legacy is definitely tarnished, even if I really don't think what he did was that far out of the norm from quite a few other NFL teams. But still, you never want the team you route for to be embroiled in such matters. The Draft picks will hurt, but we were stockpiled this year. And I find i difficult to say a 500K fine won't hurt Bill, no matter what he makes.

Moving on, the only real solace for Pats fans will be for them to come out and blow the fucking doors off of San Diego, Indy and win the Bowl. Anything short of that(understandably) will provide even more fodder for Bill haters (George, i know you secretly love him). Plus, we are already demonized, so we may as well come out swinging.

Good luck to the Jets & Giants, with whom we have games remaining this season.

PS- That must mean the Giants Superbowls are tainted and should be stricken from the record books right :-), with Evil Little Bill forcing Sweet Ol' Tuna to tape the Bills signals ?
Sep. 14th, 2007 02:26 pm (UTC)
Wasn't it Jets security that discovered and apprehended the culprit? Think how often teams (especially the Pats) must do this in their home stadiums with zero harrassment.

As far as tarnishing the Pats' image? Maybe a little, but I bet they'll still win a lot of games.
Sep. 14th, 2007 02:36 pm (UTC)
It is amazing how high handed some people are. Yes what they did was wrong but it is also something that is rampant in the nfl. The punishment fit the crime it's not like he put drugs in the gatorade for cryin out loud. 750,000 plus a first rounder is penalty enough. Not to mention he has to hear fans talking aboutr how he never would've beaten their precious teams "without cheating" forever now which IMO is worse than the fines. Fact is the pats were gonna cream the jets either way. As far as some misconcieved notion that there is or is suppossed to be honor in the NFL then you aren't paying attention, all the owners want to hear about is the W.
Sep. 14th, 2007 02:59 pm (UTC)
Re: Bellicheat
if they were going to "cream" the jets anyway - why waste time cheating?
Sep. 14th, 2007 02:54 pm (UTC)
I have to agree with many others that this seems like it's appropriate enough.

A first found pick is a steep price. And while it may not affect Belichick that much (if, as a rumor was going around during the team's off-season spending spree, he's actually planning on retiring if he wins it all this year), but it'll sure irk Kraft, and maybe ownership will put weight on Belichick to stop doing this stuff. In addition, a fine of half a million dollars is hefty, especially for a coach who doesn't seem to supplement his base salary with endorsements or book sales.

What were the alternatives? A suspension for a game or two? What would that really matter? The team can still win without Belichick, and even if they lost those games, there's so much talent that they'd still make the playoffs.

I'm a die-hard Giants fan (I don't have as much interest in the Jets as you do), so I'm not coming from the same place you are when I look at this. But the fact is that the Jets are not in the same league as the Pats this year (though Mangini is doing an impressive job building the team in the right way), and they probably weren't going to win the game no matter how much the Pats did or didn't cheat. I actually agree with many of the points made by Bill Simmons on espn.com. It's bad, the Pats were punished in a way that is going to create a strong disincentive for other clubs to do the same thing, and by next week, the Pats (and everyone else) will be looking for some new way around the rules.

It's just the way of sports. Everyone looks for an edge, and the competitors will always be at least one step ahead of the rulebook.
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George R.R. Martin
George R. R. Martin

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