Nationally, footage of Patriots’ videotape incident being misrepresented

Ryan Hannable
December 15, 2019 - 8:06 pm

Rather predictably, on Sunday’s FOX pregame show, Jay Glazer showed leaked footage of what happened in the Cleveland press box last Sunday when it came to the videotaping incident involving the Patriots and the Bengals sideline.

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And it showed exactly what the Patriots said in their statement released last Monday night.

A production crew, which included a full-time employee of Kraft Sports Productions, inappropriately filmed the field from the press box as part of a “Do Your Job” profile on an advanced scout. When questioned, the crew immediately turned over all footage to the league and cooperated fully. 

Glazer’s video showed a brief glimpse of what was being shot and then an exchange with someone from the Bengals who saw what was being filmed.

“I didn’t know,” the Patriots employee is heard saying.

“How did you not know?,” Bengals security responded.

“I didn’t know. I’m sorry,” the Patriots employee replied, before saying he could delete all the footage and it would go away forever.

“The damage is done, my friend,” Bengals security shot back.

Clearly, the Patriots employee did not know what he did was wrong, and the video that was shown by Glazer showed only the sideline and the field. There was no panning to the scoreboard to show down and distance, so it would not give the football department any advantage whatsoever. But, that doesn’t even matter because it had nothing to do with the football department. They would never have even seen what was shot. 

Despite all that common sense, nationally the video is being taken the wrong way because of what people want to believe.

Just look at Darren Rovell, the former ESPN employee now with the Action Network.

“The only reason why a genuine person would want video of an opponents sideline for a piece of journalism would be on a story about stealing signs. That’s the only story where this video would actually make sense,” he tweeted.

Sorry, D. 

It would also “actually make sense” to show what the scout would be looking at through his binoculars, which would be the next opponents sideline, and in this case would be the Bengals'. Part of going to the next opponents game is to observe their sideline for substitution patterns, etc., which is what the scout was doing and what the video was going to show.

Again, common sense. But, people nationally want the Patriots to be guilty of a big videotaping scandal because they are the Patriots.

When objectively watching the leaked video, the only conclusion to be made is that everything goes in line with the Patriots' statement that illegal video was mistakingly shot of the field, but it had nothing to do with the football side of the organization.

Since so many people dislike the Patriots, many are viewing it differently and trying to make something out of nothing -- which is exactly what it is.

It was an innocent mistake made by a long-time employee of the Patriots’ production team who didn’t have anything to do with football. What could possibly be gained by what was captured on tape? In 31 other cities it would be classified as a pure mistake, but because the Patriots are the Patriots, here we are.

Yes, the Patriots made a mistake and will be disciplined for it, but that’s all it is. It’s the furthest thing from a full-fledged cheating operation ordered by Bill Belichick and Co.

Sorry, America.

Related: Patriots producer releases statement on videotaping incident