Belichick Issues Apology for Spying Incident
New England Patriots Coach Bill Belichick issued an apology today for the incident in which his team is accused of improperly stealing signals by New York Jets coaches during a game last weekend at Giants Stadium.
Belichick also indicated that he'd spoken to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell this week about the matter.
"At this point, we have not been notified of the league's ruling," Belichick said in a written statement released by the Patriots. "Although it remains a league matter, I want to apologize to everyone who has been affected, most of all ownership, staff and players. Following the league's decision, I will have further comment."
Belichick said in the statement that he'd spoken to Goodell about "my interpretation of the rules."
The Patriots' three-time Super Bowl-winning coach refused to comment further on the issue during a news conference today in Foxborough, Mass., and left the room when reporters pressed him on the matter.
Sources familiar with the league's investigation say that Goodell is prepared to strip a draft pick or picks from the Patriots for violating league rules regarding the use of videotaping equipment to spy on an opponent.
League security officials confiscated videotaping equipment from a Patriots employee who was on the field Sunday at Giants Stadium, allegedly taping the hand signals used by Jets coaches to signal play calls to players on the field. The Patriots reportedly have been accused of using such tactics in the past. A source said Tuesday that Goodell would make a final determination about a punishment after giving the Patriots a chance to defend themselves this week, probably by telephone.
By Mark Maske |
September 12, 2007; 1:49 PM ET
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