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#pounditSaturday, October 24, 2020

Report: Patriots tape does not show anything that can’t be seen on TV, film

New England Patriots

The NFL is in the process of investigating the footage the New England Patriots obtained when a member of their film production crew illegally recorded the field during Sunday’s game between the Cleveland Browns and Cincinnati Bengals, and it does not sound like any shocking discoveries have been made.

NFL officials who have viewed the footage believe there is nothing on it that a team could not see either on the television broadcast or the coaches film from a game, Judy Battista of NFL Network reported on Wednesday. However, Battista noted that the Bengals may not agree.

The NFL wants to wrap the investigation up quickly, and Battista also said there has been nothing to indicate the situation is going to be deemed a “significant issue.” The Patriots have said the violation of rules occurred as a simple misunderstanding, and the league is inclined to believe them despite their controversial history.

According to a statement the Patriots released, their video production team — which is apparently not connected to their football operations department — shot footage of the field for part of their “Do Your Job” documentary. The production crew in Cleveland was supposedly giving a glimpse into how an advanced scout prepares for an upcoming opponent. The cameraman reportedly shot the footage right out in the open for anyone to see, which, if true, makes it seem like he genuinely did not know he was violating any rules.

Bill Belichick immediately distanced himself from the incident when the news broke, and he did not back down from that stance during a testy exchange with the media on Wednesday.

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