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fordfixer
11-14-2010, 01:23 AM
Starkey: Spygate's haunting question
By Joe Starkey, PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Sunday, November 14, 2010
http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsbu ... 09276.html (http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/sports/steelers/s_709276.html)

Hate to raise a sore subject, but Bill Belichick's in town for the first time since "Spygate" broke, so it only seems appropriate. It's also a significant part of what has spiced the underrated Steelers-Patriots rivalry over the past decade:

Cheating.

Belichick, by any measure, is one of the best coaches in NFL history. And he brazenly broke league rules for seven-plus years, starting in 2000, before his former assistant, Eric Mangini, went all John Dean and blew the whistle on the Patriots' video games.

Belichick stole signals in broad daylight, ordering his minions to videotape opposing coaches on the sidelines. He wasn't the only one, and nobody can say for sure how much the taping aided the Patriots in winning three Super Bowls (nobody except Belichick, that is, and he'd rather serve as Mangini's personal masseuse than talk about it) but the haunting question remains:

Why would Mr. Bill have continued the practice for so long if it wasn't doing him any good?

The subject is particularly sore for Steelers fans who believe their team was robbed of Super Bowl trips in 2001 and/or 2004. They believe the stealers beat their Steelers in AFC title games those seasons, though team officials have consistently maintained that the Patriots won fair and square.

Others within the organization wonder, and likely always will.

Whenever I have raised the issue with players or coaches, asking if they believe the Patriots might have utilized an ill-gotten advantage, they are careful in their responses. Nobody wants to make excuses.

But nobody answers with a flat no, either.

Hines Ward has always maintained, with more than a hint of accusation, that the Patriots were "one step ahead" of the Steelers in the '01 and '04 title games. I asked Ward on Friday if the Steelers' core group of veterans -- 15 remain from 2004 -- believe the Patriots had an edge, given that Belichick had apparently taped the team's hand signals during their regular-season meeting.

Ward laughed like a man who didn't want to say too much.

"It's locker-room talk," he admitted. "It is what it is."

He quickly added, "But we're not going to make excuses, go back and say they cheated. They've had great success with their coach and (quarterback) Tom Brady. As long as you have those two, you always have a chance to win."

Yes, but just out of curiosity, how much benefit might one derive from knowing the opposition signals?

Ward laughed again.

"It would help us out tremendously, picking out tendencies and being one step ahead of them at all times."

That answer reminded me of a conversation with the very man whose signals were heisted in 2004 -- defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau. We broached the topic two years ago in training camp. LeBeau, who had never discussed the issue publicly, explained that his signals stayed much the same from game to game, so as to avoid confusion among his players.

Did the Patriots have an unfair advantage?

"I don't see how it could hurt 'em," LeBeau said. "But that's not for me to decide."

Oh well, it's water under the Bill now, I suppose ... unless you were one of participants and will go to your grave wondering if you were cheated out of a fair shot at the Super Bowl.

DukieBoy
11-14-2010, 11:28 AM
[quote="fordfixer"]Starkey: Spygate's haunting question
By Joe Starkey, PITTSBURGH TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Sunday, November 14, 2010
http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsbu ... 09276.html (http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/sports/steelers/s_709276.html)

Hate to raise a sore subject, but Bill Belichick's in town for the first time since "Spygate" broke, so it only seems appropriate. It's also a significant part of what has spiced the underrated Steelers-Patriots rivalry over the past decade:

Cheating.

Belichick, by any measure, is one of the best coaches in NFL history. And he brazenly broke league rules for seven-plus years, starting in 2000, before his former assistant, Eric Mangini, went all John Dean and blew the whistle on the Patriots' video games.

Belichick stole signals in broad daylight, ordering his minions to videotape opposing coaches on the sidelines. He wasn't the only one, and nobody can say for sure how much the taping aided the Patriots in winning three Super Bowls (nobody except Belichick, that is, and he'd rather serve as Mangini's personal masseuse than talk about it) but the haunting question remains:

Why would Mr. Bill have continued the practice for so long if it wasn't doing him any good?

The subject is particularly sore for Steelers fans who believe their team was robbed of Super Bowl trips in 2001 and/or 2004. They believe the stealers beat their Steelers in AFC title games those seasons, though team officials have consistently maintained that the Patriots won fair and square.

Of course not. The appearance of league credibility is essential to the bottom line $$$$$$$$$. The controversy would cost $$$$$$$$. That, btw, is why the owners need to give Goodell his walking papers.


Others within the organization wonder, and likely always will.

Whenever I have raised the issue with players or coaches, asking if they believe the Patriots might have utilized an ill-gotten advantage, they are careful in their responses. Nobody wants to make excuses.

But nobody answers with a flat no, either.
The others know what happened, but they risk alot if they talk about it.

grotonsteel
11-14-2010, 01:12 PM
The subject is particularly sore for Steelers fans who believe their team was robbed of Super Bowl trips in 2001 and/or 2004. They believe the stealers beat their Steelers in AFC title games those seasons, though team officials have consistently maintained that the Patriots won fair and square.

Of course not. The appearance of league credibility is essential to the bottom line $$$$$$$$$. The controversy would cost $$$$$$$$. That, btw, is why the owners need to give Goodell his walking papers.


Others within the organization wonder, and likely always will.

Whenever I have raised the issue with players or coaches, asking if they believe the Patriots might have utilized an ill-gotten advantage, they are careful in their responses. Nobody wants to make excuses.

But nobody answers with a flat no, either.
The others know what happened, but they risk alot if they talk about it.

:Agree

It was so shocking the way this matter was closed.

SteelCzar76
11-14-2010, 02:19 PM
Yes the Patriots most certainly gained a slight competitive edge by dubious means.

However,...what was the recurring theme in both of our title game losses to the Patriots ? (as well as the title game vs the Broncos and the Superbowl loss to the Cowgirls)............Chucklehead play from the QB position. No excuses dude.

Therefore,..i don't care to even hear of "spygate". As it's shield of sorts IMO to hide the fact that more often than not, our modern era QBs play like sh#t in big games.

StarSpangledSteeler
11-14-2010, 03:08 PM
Yes the Patriots most certainly gained a slight competitive edge by dubious means.

However,...what was the recurring theme in both of our title game losses to the Patriots ? (as well as the title game vs the Broncos and the Superbowl loss to the Cowgirls)............Chucklehead play from the QB position. No excuses dude.

Therefore,..i don't care to even hear of "spygate". As it's shield of sorts IMO to hide the fact that more often than not, our modern era QBs play like sh#t in big games.

I hear what you're saying and i respect the high road, but N.E.'s cheating directly effected our QB's performance. Remember Hines Ward's comment [The Patriot's DB's were mocking him at the line of scrimmage by calling out the play he was about to run before the snap]. Now, of course, that doesn't really effect the blocked FG and Troy Brown punt return TD in 2001 but it absolutely effects Big Ben in 2004.

sentinel33
11-14-2010, 07:20 PM
they will forever be known as the cheatriots to me. havent won any superbowls since the whistle was blown on them. i dont recognize there superbowls and bill is a D-Bag. he has zero sportsmanship and an unbelievably lofty view of himself. what ward said about them mocking him about what plays they are about run cinches it for me. its not one play that wins or loses a game. i wont forget it and i wont let anyone else forget it either.

DukieBoy
11-14-2010, 09:00 PM
In my opinion, what Belichick did far exceeds any wrong Pete Rose ever did. Rose's sins against baseball have not been forgiven.

Djfan
11-15-2010, 02:31 AM
In my opinion, what Belichick did far exceeds any wrong Pete Rose ever did. Rose's sins against baseball have not been forgiven.

Agreed, but Rose didn't have the league office cover for him. Goodell is as guilty in this as Bellicheat, IMO.