|Partners in crime?|
Is the epic success of Bill Belichick and the New England organization forever tainted?
The Belichick era track record speaks for itself:
The Patriots were aided by the highly controversial Tuck Rule (one of the worst call in NFL history), Spygate; and now Deflategate.
Homerun records by Barry Bonds, Sammy Sosa and Mark McGuire are viewed as illegitimate in the court of public opinion because of alleged steroid abuse -- that unfair competitive advantage thing. Accordingly, these baseball mega-stars are overtly ignored by the baseball Hall of Fame.
Cheating is cheating.
Likewise, the accomplishments of the Belichick/Brady era should have asterisks because of over a decade of blatant cheating by this organization.
As one sports reporter write:
I see no other way to reasonably interpret this other than to conclude that the Patriots, as an organization, have repeatedly cheated their way to victories. We don't know yet who knew and did what and when -- but come on -- this is ridiculous.
At a minimum, these scandals have tarnished the legacy of Tom Brady, Bill Belichick and the Patriots organization. source
Some Pat fans and Belichick apologist claim this latest brouhaha is much ado about nothing. They label Pat haters as jealous and poor sports. I fervently disagree because, once again, cheating is cheating and the facts don't lie.
Check out this unreal fact regarding how infrequently NE fumbles -- remember a deflated ball allows for a firmer grip -- compared to the rest of the league.
I immediately noticed something that cannot be overlooked: the issue with ball security and fumbles. Then I remembered this remarkable fact:
The 2014 Patriots were just the 3rd team in the last 25 years to never have lost a fumble at home! The biggest difference between the Patriots and the other 2 teams who did it was that New England ran between 150 and 200 MORE plays this year than those teams did in the years they had zero home fumbles, making the Patriots stand alone in this unique statistic.
Based on the desire to incorporate full season data (not just home games, as a team theoretically bring “doctored footballs” with them on the road) I performed the following analysis:
I looked at the last 5 years of data (since 2010) and examined TOTAL FUMBLES in all games (as well as fumbles/game) but more importantly, TOTAL OFFENSIVE PLAYS RUN. Thus, we can to determine average PLAYS per FUMBLE, a much more valuable statistic. The results are displayed in the chart below. Keep in mind, this is for all games since 2010, regardless of indoors, outdoors, weather, site, etc. EVERYTHING read entire article
The NFL has served as Belichick's co-enabler. For spygate, Belichick received a metaphorical slap on the wrist compared to the severe punishment of New Orleans's Sean Payton and his defensive coordinator Greg Williams for bountygate. Sean Payton was kicked out of the league for one year and Greg Williams received an indefinite ban.
Belichick, the protected one?
To add insult to injury, the league destroyed all of spygate's evidence, essentially protecting Belichick and the Patriot organization from public scrutiny.
If the NFL continues the look-the-other way policy with NE, they will continue to undermine the vaulted stature and integrity of America's favorite and most lucrative pastime. I, for one, am leaning towards boycotting this year's Super Bowl.