As I helped my wife out with our youngest child today, I turned on ESPN to get the latest. I had forgotten that today was SpyGate Day and Matt Walsh would speak to Roger Goodell and Senator Arlen Spector about his tapes and knowledge of the videotaping of team signals and walkthroughs.
It is my hope that this story will die. I think it is quite possibly the biggest non-story of the NFL in years. Yes, I like the Patriots. No, I don't like everything about their coach. By the way, my favorite football team resides in the desert of Arizona, followed by the the teams of the major Bay areas (minus Oakland- I like the Mass Bay, The Tampa Bay, San Fran Bay and Green Bay- I need all that water to make up for the lack of water in Arizona). So, I am biased, but no more than your typical Eagles, Bears or Giants fan. The ridiculous amount of hypocrisy and jealousy that have kept this non-story alive baffles me.
Get over it. Here are the facts...
1. Arlen Spector is a whiny Eagles/ Steelers fan. He is abusing Senatorial power for a vendetta. He does not understand football or its rules yet he insists on meeting with a camera boy because his precious football teams get out coached.
Where was Spector when the Broncos were "cheating" the salary cap, a much more egregious sin than Spygate (and where was the outrage?). Where was Spector when the 49ers did the same thing? Where was Spector when the Dolphins were wearing mics to listen to opposing plays? Where was he when half the Carolina panthers were caught on steroids? Nowhere, because it did not affect him. This is not steroids and Congress should have never had 1 meeting regarding that.
2. This stuff always happens in sports. Teams will use any means necessary to get a competitive advantage. Every team in the NFL tapes opposing teams and their signals. The difference is this. A disgruntled ex-patriots coach decided to rat out his former team. He had been part of it and was doing it himself. These guys learn it from each other. Plus, you can photograph the same signals and formations, you just cannot video tape them (where are they living? the 1920s? What a stupid guideline).
The other difference? The Pats were better at evaluating the content and using it to their advantage. The other teams need to figure out how to win- this includes my Cardinals. If the Cardinals caught caught doing this- AND WINNING, I would be laughing hysterically. So would you, if it was your team.
3. People need to get over their sanctimonious hand wringing. In Little League we tried to steal signals and yell at opposing batters to take them off their game. In tennis we play head games with other players. In basketball we flop and put up thundersticks as opposing players shoot free throws. In the NFL they steal each others signals. It goes on. If winning is important, then we will try to win. Videotaping other teams and stealing signals should not be illegal. It is so low on the "what is wrong with sports" meter that I cannot even justify its inclusion. It is the illegal immigration of sports. Much noise, but no real problem.
You want to know something? I would do it too. If we were playing, I would not steal your playbook, because that is stealing something tangible. But, if I could figure out what you meant when your hands went in a certain direction, I would. If I had to video tape it to figure it out. I would. You don't want someone stealing your signals? Change them. Get better at it than the other guy.
And just move on to a real story.