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Old 12-14-2007, 07:42 AM   #1
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Default Did Patriots Know Snap Counts?

I make no excuses whatsoever for the Steelers lost to the Pats last week, but I can't help but wonder . . . . As my Mama always said, once a cheat always a cheat.

Steelers Notebook: Did Patriots' defense know snap counts?

Friday, December 14, 2007
By Paul Zeise, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

New England was fined earlier this season for using videotape to try to steal defensive signals from the New York Jets, but did they find a way to steal the Steelers' snap counts as well?

That's the way it appeared Sunday in the Patriots' 34-13 victory against the Steelers at Gillette Stadium as the defense, in particular linebacker Mike Vrabel, seemed able to get a great jump on the ball several times. That seemed especially the case when the Steelers used silent snap counts to deal with crowd noise.

Steelers offensive coordinator Bruce Arians said that Vrabel certainly did get off the line quickly a number of times, but he does not think it was anything deeper than just an observant player picking up trends.

"Anytime you use a silent count, there is an indicator, and, whether [the Patriots] were tipped off or not, it is not real hard to pick up on," Arians said. "And, for us, it is not as much of a thing that you are worried about the defense as you worry about your own guys getting off in a timely fashion, and that is a problem with it. Some teams try to time it up, and so you use alternate [snap counts] to try and throw them off, but [Vrabel] just got a good jump a couple of times.

Steelers guard Kendall Simmons said he knows Vrabel had a good beat on the Steelers' snap counts, but that is not unusual. Every team looks for an edge and figuring out trends can be a big one.

"I'm guessing [Vrabel] was [on to the Steelers' snap count] because he was doing a good job of timing it out," Simmons said. "Smart defensive guys do whatever they can to get the edge on you and, if they can jump the snap count, they will and, as long as the referees aren't calling it, it isn't offsides. We might see it as that, but [the officials] have to call it first."

Holmes healing

Santonio Holmes missed the two games before the loss Sunday at New England with a high ankle sprain and said his inactivity -- combined with the fact that he is not fully healed -- contributed to him not being a factor in the passing game. Holmes, who had only one catch for 13 yards, said he expects to be a much bigger factor this week.

He said, however, that his ankle continues to be troublesome because it is the kind of injury that takes some time to heal.

"I'm going to play this week and I don't think I am going to miss another game," Holmes said. "When adrenaline starts rushing during games, it really isn't a factor. But it is tough to go on and, if it wasn't such a short season for us, I would probably be out for at least a month. But the season is short in football, so you have to get back and get healthy as quick as you can."

Buckle your chin straps

The Jaguars, like the Steelers, pride themselves on playing a very physical brand of football. The games between the two teams traditionally have been slugfests with plenty of big hits from both sides.

And that's exactly what the Steelers are bracing for Sunday.

"It will be physical on both sides of the ball," said Steelers cornerback Bryant McFadden. "Anytime you think of a Jacksonville-Pittsburgh game, even going back to the days when they were in the same division, it was always a physical ballgame, and it still is. The game we played last year, it was a very intense game, a physical game, and went down to the wire. Both teams have kind of the same mind-set -- run the ball offensively, hitting you in the mouth defensively -- it is kind of a mirror image of two teams that are going to go at it pretty hard."

Quick hits

Linebacker Marquis Cooper, claimed off waivers Tuesday by the Steelers from Jacksonville, will wear No. 55 -- the number worn by outside linebacker Joey Porter before he was released by the Steelers and signed with the Miami Dolphins as a free agent after last season. ... The Steelers signed offensive guard Jonathan Palmer (6 feet 4, 321 pounds) to the practice squad. Palmer played at Auburn. ... Backup linebacker Andre Frazier (groin) did not practice for the second consecutive day. Also, receiver Hines Ward and offensive tackle Marvel Smith returned to practice after missing Wednesday as did McFadden, who sat out with an ankle injury.

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/07348/841657-66.stm
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Last edited by HometownGal; 12-14-2007 at 07:55 AM. Reason: Added link.
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Old 12-14-2007, 08:23 AM   #2
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Default Re: Did Patriots Know Snap Counts?

Did we use radios for the game? If so, that makes Willie's runs all the more impressive if the Pats knew they were coming.
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Old 12-14-2007, 08:25 AM   #3
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Default Re: Did Patriots Know Snap Counts?

Snap counts . . .I swore Vrabel was offsides on the first redzone series.
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Old 12-14-2007, 08:25 AM   #4
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Default Re: Did Patriots Know Snap Counts?

Everything that team does is questionable, IMO, as long as Belicheat is HC there. It is what it is.
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Old 12-14-2007, 08:28 AM   #5
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Default Re: Did Patriots Know Snap Counts?

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Everything that team does is questionable, IMO, as long as Belicheat is HC there. It is what it is.
Agreed. Did you hear Rodney Harrison say he "knew" the Hines Ward run was coming on 4th and 1? I thought that was interesting. How the heck did he see that coming?!
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Old 12-14-2007, 08:31 AM   #6
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Default Re: Did Patriots Know Snap Counts?

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Agreed. Did you hear Rodney Harrison say he "knew" the Hines Ward run was coming on 4th and 1? I thought that was interesting. How the heck did he see that coming?!
Because I don't think I've EVER seen that play before.

The Pats fans hate it and will deny it up one side and down the other, but the damage is done.
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Old 12-14-2007, 08:59 AM   #7
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Default Re: Did Patriots Know Snap Counts?

When Ben is in the shotgun everyone and their grandma knows when the snap is coming. He almost always resets twice then snaps right after. This was what screwd us many times during the Jets game, I thought they had fixed it because against the Dolphins and Bungles I didn't notice it. However, when we played the Patriots he started doing it again and that was the first Vrable off-sides (Too close to call but he was off sides) he got that great jump right after ben reset the second time.
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Old 12-14-2007, 09:00 AM   #8
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Default Re: Did Patriots Know Snap Counts?

Nothing that you could tell me about them would surprise me. I believe the spygate incident was the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the Patsies cheating. All things eventually come to light and so will this. Someone on Bellichicks staff will turn on him and spill the beans, its just a matter of time.
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Old 12-14-2007, 09:05 AM   #9
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Default Re: Did Patriots Know Snap Counts?

It is to the point the Pats are regarded as some superhuman form of life that can read the thoughts of opposing teams.

There are lots of ways to credibly guess snap counts without cheating to do it. As for Harrison "knowing" the Ward run was coming, IMO that is Rodney playing head games.

As HTG was saying about my Anthony Smith rants, it is time to look forward and not back.
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Old 12-14-2007, 09:07 AM   #10
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Default Re: Did Patriots Know Snap Counts?

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I believe the spygate incident was the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the Patsies cheating. All things eventually come to light and so will this. Someone on Bellichicks staff will turn on him and spill the beans, its just a matter of time.
It didn't help matters that Goodell tried like hell to make the whole thing go away as expeditiously as possible like a good little lapdog for Kraft, either. Like I said, everything that team does from here on out is fair game to be questioned as long as Belichick is the HC there. Pats fans can keep their fingers jammed in their ears while going "la-la-la-la-la" all they want to over it, but it won't change things.
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