This is only about half, but it is a must-read. ESPN Reports:
Patriots coach Bill Belichick and vice president of player personnel Scott Pioli issued a broad denial Sunday in a report on The Boston Globe’s Web site regarding suggestions by a former employee that their team taped a St. Louis Rams walk-through before the 2002 Super Bowl.
“In my entire coaching career, I’ve never seen another team’s practice film prior to playing that team,” Belichick told the newspaper. “I have never authorized, or heard of, or even seen in any way, shape, or form any other team’s walk-through. We don’t even film our own. We don’t even want to see ourselves do anything, that’s the pace that it’s at. Regardless, I’ve never been a part of that.”
Belichick also told The Globe that in his “entire coaching career, I have never filmed a walk-through, our own. I’ve never been on a staff that has filmed a walk-through. I’m talking about when I was a head coach. As an assistant, I’ve never seen a head coach film a walk-through the day before a game.”
Pioli told the newspaper Matt Walsh was terminated in January 2003 after discovering Walsh secretly tape-recording conversations between himself and Walsh. Pioli told the newspaper he learned of the recorded conversations because “two other employees saw him doing it, and I checked after, and heard it on the tape myself.”
Michael Levy, Walsh’s lawyer, disputed Pioli’s story on Sunday night and, after speaking with Walsh, called it a “complete fabrication.”
“This is a predictable and pathetic effort to smear Mr. Walsh’s character rather than confront the truth about the Patriots’ conduct,” Levy told The Globe.
Patriots spokesman Stacey James did not return phone calls or an e-mail from The Associated Press on Sunday night.
Walsh, who was employed by the Patriots from 1996-2003, has suggested to ESPN.com that he has information that could be potentially damaging to the league and the Patriots. He has, to date, refused to provide specifics or turn over potential evidence without protection against potential lawsuits.
Levy had said Walsh would turn over his materials to the NFL if provided with complete indemnification by the league, but Levy recently stated the NFL has fallen short of his request, which if granted could protect Walsh from being sued.
The day before the Patriots’ 17-14 loss to the New York Giants in this year’s Super Bowl, the Boston Herald reported New England taped St. Louis’ walk-through before the first of the Patriots’ three Super Bowl victories.
Pioli told the Globe that Walsh’s job was an entry-level position.
I really can’t make a judgement about anything just yet. I have no idea what to believe. I know who I want to believe, but I just don’t know.