Gamesmanship vs. Cheating (NY Times)The line between cheating and gamesmanship is constantly blurred, and the New England Patriots, one of theN.F.L.’s premier franchises, seem to continually test it. Quarterback Tom Brady and Coach Bill Belichick have won three Super Bowls together and are about to appear in their sixth, but they have now been at the center of two high-profile rule controversies that have potentially tainted their legacies.
Years after punishing the Patriots for stealing signs, the N.F.L. is investigating whether the team intentionally deflated balls it used on offense during last week’s A.F.C. championship game, in which the Patriots beat the Colts, 45-7, to advance to the Super Bowl.
Here's what happened. You ready?
Tom Brady's ball boys got a bunch of footballs, admittedly on the low side of the NFL's pressure standards. Brady felt them briefly, shrugged, and said, "Okay, thanks." The ball boys then handed them to the refs, who also shrugged--without making much effort to check their inflation per square inch. Those same balls then went straight to the game, where they were used--as approved--despite being below the normal pressure standards.
Who's at fault?
Who cares? This is an idiotic controversy. As soon as we started talking about potential chains-of-custody for pre-game footballs, you knew this had gone way too far. Honestly, I can't believe we've wasted time on it, especially given that the Pats won the game in question 45-7.
Say it with me people: bread and circuses.
Yeah. It looked really bad, y'know?
This year's first too hot for the Super Bowl ad is from Carl's Jr.
Ugh. How is that worse than what's on regular TV?
Finally figured out the storyline for the next Sneax story. It's kind of a Frankentstein story.
— Dan (@Dan_T_Head) January 23, 2015
I'm all into Frankenstein right now. Weird monsters and stuff. That's what's bouncing around in my brain.
For what it's worth, I decided to pitch the story as an RPG adventure first.
This was a few days ago. It's still well worth reading.
Just read @AlecMacGillis' fantastic Jeb Bush feature: http://t.co/hDLjgDIOxM
— Olivia Nuzzi (@Olivianuzzi) January 20, 2015