More shit may be hitting the fan....
DESPITE BIG WIN, CHEATING SCANDAL PERSISTS
The New England Patriots throttled the Chargers on Sunday night, beating San Diego by the same 38-14 score that the Pats posted against the Jets.
And the final score of the Jets game isn't the only thing still lingering in New England.
Even though the Patriots spanked L.T. and company on national television, there continues to be a strong amount of momentum building behind ongoing allegations of past efforts to cheat.
On Sunday, it was reported by multiple outlets that Commissioner Roger Goodell has made a sweeping request for notes, videotapes, and files dating back to 2000, coach Bill Belichick's first season with the team. Appearing exclusively on NBC, Goodell confirmed that the request has been made, and he made it clear that any funny business in the effort to comply with his request will be met with further sanctions. (Obviously, any further evidence of cheating will be met with further sanctions, too.)
The broader question is whether further evidence of cheating will be found, either through the Commissioner's investigation or as a result of the burgeoning (thanks, Tiki) media feeding frenzy. Regardless of whether the league's official investigation includes interviews of current and former employees, it's a safe bet that many folks in the media are working hard to be the one to push this story forward -- especially after Jay Glazer of FOX got his mitts on the video that was confiscated from the Week One game at the Meadowlands. (For those of you who missed it, here it is.)
And there's plenty of fodder for further investigation. On Sunday, Jerome Bettis of NBC suggested that cheating fueled the Pats' 2004 AFC title game win at Pittsburgh. (On CBS, former Steelers coach Bill Cowher denied that cheating affected either of the team's title-game losses to New England.) Chris Mortensen of ESPN reported that Belichick has a detailed library of information on every head coach and coordinator, which could be the result of both proper and improper activities. Andrea Kremer of NBC explained that the question of additional radio frequencies relates to the suspected use of microphones on defensive linemen. Tim Brown of FOX alleged that microphones were used during the 2001 divisional playoff game between the Raiders and the Patriots. Charley Casserly of CBS spoke of Patriots employees searching locker rooms after the opposing team had headed to the field, finding things such as the initial offensive plays drawn on a chalkboard.
Chances are that somewhere, somehow someone is going to blow the lid off of one or more of these accusations with conclusive proof. There's simply too much smoke to believe that there isn't additional fire. The issue is when and if someone who was directly involved in one or more of these activities will talk about it on the record.