Weatherford Democrat

Sports

May 19, 2008

Column: It’s over... let it go

The Matt Walsh, New England Patriots, Spygate issue seemed to have come to some sort of resolution Tuesday when NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell held a press conference to inform the media and the general public that after meeting with Walsh, no new evidence was found and no new information about the video taping practices of the Patriots came to light.

While we all will forever sit back and play conspiracy theorist about the whole incident and the validity of the accomplishments of the New England football team since Bill Belichick took over, the fact is, we will never really know. For all we know, Walsh may have had more information and more damning evidence of the Patriots and their use of the infamous practice and signal tapes, but money has a way of making everything better. Again, no one, but Walsh and a few people with the New England franchise, will ever know the truth.

That being said, much like Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa, Rafael Palmiero and most recently, Roger Clemens, in the court of public opinion, the Patriots, their coach and many of their players will forever be labeled as cheaters. They will always have to field questions about Spygate throughout the rest of their respective careers and any major accomplishment will always be in question. It will probably be one of the first issues that is deliberated about when Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is up for the Hall of Fame. That’s the way this whole thing works. The team has been punished, Belichick has been punished and the players will continue to be punished.

The good thing for New England, the people that pay to attend the games are the ones who will always believe whatever the Patriots press team releases, so there’s no damage there. As long as Bostonians have a football team, no matter how good or how bad, they will love and cherish that team. Look at Manny Ramirez. He’s a great hitter, but as a baseball player, he lacks in many areas. He can’t play the field very well. His arm is less than enviable and the amount of effort he exudes on the basepaths is almost laughable. However, he is a member of the Red Sox and he is beloved by much, if not all, of the Northeast. That’s just what they do with their teams and sports figures. They love them no matter what, and there’s something to be said for that.

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