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2014 NFL Season Thread


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Here's an article on Slate about how, since 2010, the Patriots' fumble loss numbers are impossibly better than the rest of the league: http://www.slate.com/articles/sports/sports_nut/2015/01/ballghazi_the_new_england_patriots_lose_an_insanely_low_number_of_fumbles.html

Here's a fun graph:

150123_SNUT_Fumble-01.png.CROP.original-

And another:

150123_SNUT_Fumble-03.png.CROP.original-

They're literally off the chart. I don't think this last Sunday was the first time they've deflated balls.

Oh, lighten up. It's sports. Sports are dumb.

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Here's an article on Slate about how, since 2010, the Patriots' fumble loss numbers are impossibly better than the rest of the league: http://www.slate.com/articles/sports/sports_nut/2015/01/ballghazi_the_new_england_patriots_lose_an_insanely_low_number_of_fumbles.html

Here's a fun graph:

150123_SNUT_Fumble-01.png.CROP.original-

And another:

150123_SNUT_Fumble-03.png.CROP.original-

They're literally off the chart. I don't think this last Sunday was the first time they've deflated balls.

That data is pretty inaccurate. First, that data uses fumbles lost per play, not total fumbles, to calculate the 1-in-16,000 odds. I guess the only thing that's amazing is the Patriots have a tendency to recover their own fumbles....that has nothing to do with inflated footballs. The Patriots, according to Pro Football Reference, have had 81 TOTAL fumbles in the last 80 regular season games. So they fumble about one in every 75 plays. That's pretty normal in the NFL. Plus, that site doesn't factor in BenJarvus Green-Ellis, who never fumbled in high school, college, or his seasons with the Patriots. Plus the author is amazed that the Pats don't fumble at home, yet they doctor and prepare their balls the same way on the road, so the theory they have a fumbling advantage at home is bunk too.

People trying to figure stuff out like this when all they do is think about math and have no logic in their thinking are fools.

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Let's face it - since the Colts knew prior to the game that the NFL was going to test footballs, they probably overinflated theirs.

Now this is a pretty dumb statement.

What we all know by now is that the officials check the footballs 2 hours and 15 minutes before the game. It's not like the Colts knew some secret check-in was coming and the Patriots were caught off-guard. Nor was it cold enough for the balls to lose at least two pounds of pressure in that short a time span.

Actually...that's exactly what happened.

http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2015/01/21/report-nfl-planned-to-inspect-patriots-football-before-dqwell-jackson-interception/

The Colts knew something was going to take place. They tipped off the league about deflated footballs in November. Baltimore mentioned something to the Colts after the divisional round. The NFL planned to test the pressure of the balls at halftime before the game began. This has all been confirmed. I highly doubt the Pats knew about this plan.

Before you call someone's statement dumb, make sure you know all the facts. The internet has good search engines these days.

What you're thinking was the secret inspection was held at halftime, not before the game.

If all teams know the balls get inspected 2 hours and 15 minutes before every game, that's not a secret inspection. Teams know the routine: rough up the balls during the week, inspection at 10:45am Sunday morning, then supposed to be untouched until game time at 1pm.

Some time between 4:15pm and 6:50pm, a Patriots staffer decreased the pressure in the balls after they passed the NFL's standard pre-game inspection. (Because if the balls are under the minimum at the pre-game inspection, the game officials inflate the balls themselves until they meet the league's standards.)

This means that at some point between inspection and game time and halftime, the balls were tampered with. There's simply no other explanation. How else do you explain only half of the footballs losing 2 pounds in four hours? If it were exposure to the elements, the Colts balls would have lost 2 pounds as well. The minimum/maximum limits for the football are 12.5 and 13.5 psi. If the Colts' balls lost two pounds and were still in the legal range, they were, at minimum, at 14.5 psi during the NFL's pregame inspection, and they'd be illegal and deflated to the range at that point.

So, yes, saying the Patriots were surprised about an impending pregame inspection is indeed a dumb statement to make.

They got caught. They thought they'd be able to get away once the mandatory pregame inspection took place. And, if there is a question about illegal balls, yeah you're going to get a surprise inspection during/after the game. If you've got nothing to hide, nothing to worry about during the surprise inspection. Any team can request an in-game inspection of the balls if foul play is suspected.

I didn't say there was a pregame surprise inspection. I said that before the game, the Colts knew there would be a surprise inspection...at halftime. Maybe your internet is slower in the South, but seriously, learn to read.

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I hate it when people continue to assert I made a dumb statement when they don't have the mental wherewithal to process and understand said statement

Hedley -

since the Colts knew prior to the game that the NFL was going to test footballs

has a different meaning than

since the Colts knew that the NFL was going to test footballs prior to the game

I wrote the first one and maybe it could have been worded better. You assumed I wrote the second one.

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Let's face it - since the Colts knew prior to the game that the NFL was going to test footballs, they probably overinflated theirs.

Now this is a pretty dumb statement.

What we all know by now is that the officials check the footballs 2 hours and 15 minutes before the game. It's not like the Colts knew some secret check-in was coming and the Patriots were caught off-guard. Nor was it cold enough for the balls to lose at least two pounds of pressure in that short a time span.

Actually...that's exactly what happened.

http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2015/01/21/report-nfl-planned-to-inspect-patriots-football-before-dqwell-jackson-interception/

The Colts knew something was going to take place. They tipped off the league about deflated footballs in November. Baltimore mentioned something to the Colts after the divisional round. The NFL planned to test the pressure of the balls at halftime before the game began. This has all been confirmed. I highly doubt the Pats knew about this plan.

Before you call someone's statement dumb, make sure you know all the facts. The internet has good search engines these days.

Ah the Marion Berry defense.

How about you just not break the rules in the first place AND THEN YOU DON'T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT SURPRISE INSPECTIONS THAT THE OTHER TEAM MAY KNOW ABOUT.

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Here's an article on Slate about how, since 2010, the Patriots' fumble loss numbers are impossibly better than the rest of the league: http://www.slate.com/articles/sports/sports_nut/2015/01/ballghazi_the_new_england_patriots_lose_an_insanely_low_number_of_fumbles.html

Here's a fun graph:

150123_SNUT_Fumble-01.png.CROP.original-

And another:

150123_SNUT_Fumble-03.png.CROP.original-

They're literally off the chart. I don't think this last Sunday was the first time they've deflated balls.

That data is pretty inaccurate. First, that data uses fumbles lost per play, not total fumbles, to calculate the 1-in-16,000 odds. I guess the only thing that's amazing is the Patriots have a tendency to recover their own fumbles....that has nothing to do with inflated footballs. The Patriots, according to Pro Football Reference, have had 81 TOTAL fumbles in the last 80 regular season games. So they fumble about one in every 75 plays. That's pretty normal in the NFL. Plus, that site doesn't factor in BenJarvus Green-Ellis, who never fumbled in high school, college, or his seasons with the Patriots. Plus the author is amazed that the Pats don't fumble at home, yet they doctor and prepare their balls the same way on the road, so the theory they have a fumbling advantage at home is bunk too.

People trying to figure stuff out like this when all they do is think about math and have no logic in their thinking are fools.

Yet when BJE went to the Bengals he started fumbling all the time. Only conclusion: he wasn't used to the properly inflated footballs the Bengals use. :D:lol::PB)B)B)

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Here's an article on Slate about how, since 2010, the Patriots' fumble loss numbers are impossibly better than the rest of the league: http://www.slate.com/articles/sports/sports_nut/2015/01/ballghazi_the_new_england_patriots_lose_an_insanely_low_number_of_fumbles.html

Here's a fun graph:

150123_SNUT_Fumble-01.png.CROP.original-

And another:

150123_SNUT_Fumble-03.png.CROP.original-

They're literally off the chart. I don't think this last Sunday was the first time they've deflated balls.

That data is pretty inaccurate. First, that data uses fumbles lost per play, not total fumbles, to calculate the 1-in-16,000 odds. I guess the only thing that's amazing is the Patriots have a tendency to recover their own fumbles....that has nothing to do with inflated footballs. The Patriots, according to Pro Football Reference, have had 81 TOTAL fumbles in the last 80 regular season games. So they fumble about one in every 75 plays. That's pretty normal in the NFL. Plus, that site doesn't factor in BenJarvus Green-Ellis, who never fumbled in high school, college, or his seasons with the Patriots. Plus the author is amazed that the Pats don't fumble at home, yet they doctor and prepare their balls the same way on the road, so the theory they have a fumbling advantage at home is bunk too.

People trying to figure stuff out like this when all they do is think about math and have no logic in their thinking are fools.

Yet when BJE went to the Bengals he started fumbling all the time. Only conclusion: he wasn't used to the properly inflated footballs the Bengals use. :D:lol::PB)B)B)

Touche! Yeah it was weird that he suddenly had the drops as Bengal...here's hoping there's some sort of plausible deniability when he was with the Pats :D

Though on the flip side, Steven Ridley has been benched multiple games for fumbling. Maybe he needs it at 8 psi...

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I seriously doubt the league would make the Colts aware of a surprise inspection. The Colts (or some other team) may have told the league and they most likely responded with "We'll look into it" But they are not going to tell any team how they plan to go about looking into it.

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I seriously doubt the league would make the Colts aware of a surprise inspection. The Colts (or some other team) may have told the league and they most likely responded with "We'll look into it" But they are not going to tell any team how they plan to go about looking into it.

I could easily see the NFL telling the Colts "Hey, since you've brought up this concern, we'll check the footballs at halftime to see if they meet the standard."

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The argument that the game wasn't close so the cheating doesn't matter is so idiotic, it's not even funny. By that "logic," if a student cheats on a test and gets 100 on it, they should be exonerated because their score was so high that it didn't matter.

Just to respond to this. You shouldn't throw out terms like "idiotic" when your own argument is this lacking. There really isn't any correlation here between cheating on a test and what the Pats are alleged to have done.

If you cheat on a test then the act of cheating is what led to the unearned high mark. Be it looking over at another student's test and copying the answers or sneaking a cheat sheet in. The act of cheating is tied to the performance.

I see no evidence that was the case in the AFC Championship game. The deflated footballs didn't cause the Colts to be unable to stop the run. Or cause their pass coverage to break down. The Pats' deflated footballs certainly weren't the reason the Colts' offence looked so anemic. When it's all said and done? The act of cheating doesn't seem to be tied to performance. The Pats didn't win because they allegedly deflated their footballs. They won because they were, without doubt, the better team.

Now DG has a point when he says that the team shouldn't do this (if they even did, because it's yet to be established) because they don't have to, but the other side of that coin is that they don't have to, and that's why it doesn't really matter. The Colts lost because they were outplayed in every facet of the game. Sorry.

Don't even get me started on the Ravens. They accused the Pats of cheating simply because Harbaugh was out-coached by Belichick. Then, after this story with the Colts breaks, they go "oh yeah, we thought they were doing that in our game too." Really? Given that the Ravens were ready to cry foul over a trick play it seems strange that they only brought up what was clearly a violation of the rule book after a story involving another team broke.

The whole thing just seems like manufactured outrage and controversy. The act of manipulating footballs is widespread. The fact that the Pats knowingly manipulated theirs hasn't been established. Finally? It didn't matter anyway because the manipulated footballs were not the reason the Colts lost that game. Nothing. To. See. Here.

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You should probably take a closer look at your own arguments before calling others' lacking. Nobody is saying that cheating is the sole reason the Patriots beat the Colts. That being said, the margin of victory is irrelevant in this case, because the issue at hand is solely whether or not the Patriots knowingly broke the rules. That's a problem whether they won by 1 or 101. Why have rules at all if breaking them is deemed irrelevant if you win by enough points?

Additionally, just saying that "manipulating footballs is widespread" is ignoring the context. Manipulating them before inspection, which is legal, is common, and usually revolves around getting to either extreme of the league's PSI limits. What the Patriots are accused of doing is manipulating the game balls after inspection and deflating them below the minimum allowable level. By doing so, they're breaking the rules to gain an unfair competitive advantage and deceiving the officials. That is cheating, like it or not.

I also disagree with the idea that this is a manufactured controversy. The Patriots have a history of playing fast and loose with the rules and at least one known instance of cheating (Spygate). Another cheating scandal for a team with a history full of them is going to be a major story.

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Amazing video.

Now if they do that test with a "Colts" ball that doesn't deflate when it's in the same bucket with another ball that does, then I'll give the Pats the all-clear.

That chart with the plays/fumble is pretty spooky... really makes you wonder. It seems to go well beyond "coaching ball control", as if the other 31 teams don't care about fumbling.

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Amazing video.

Now if they do that test with a "Colts" ball that doesn't deflate when it's in the same bucket with another ball that does, then I'll give the Pats the all-clear.

That chart with the plays/fumble is pretty spooky... really makes you wonder. It seems to go well beyond "coaching ball control", as if the other 31 teams don't care about fumbling.

So you're assuming the Colts and Pats prepare and inflate their footballs the exact same way. What were the pressures of the Colts footballs again?

And ball control can be coached. Tiki Barber used to fumble all the time...then he changed the grip and placement...then he rarely fumbled again. Maybe the Giants switched to deflated footballs.

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Amazing video.

Now if they do that test with a "Colts" ball that doesn't deflate when it's in the same bucket with another ball that does, then I'll give the Pats the all-clear.

That chart with the plays/fumble is pretty spooky... really makes you wonder. It seems to go well beyond "coaching ball control", as if the other 31 teams don't care about fumbling.

So you're assuming the Colts and Pats prepare and inflate their footballs the exact same way. What were the pressures of the Colts footballs again?

And ball control can be coached. Tiki Barber used to fumble all the time...then he changed the grip and placement...then he rarely fumbled again. Maybe the Giants switched to deflated footballs.

Ball control can be coached, but the other 31 teams come pretty close to a Bell curve, while the Patriots are like 6 standard deviations above the mean.

Is this what we're going with now... the Pats rub their balls some special way that makes them deflate? They were fine two hours before the game, and the conditions they were exposed to during the first half should have been exactly the same as the Colts' balls. That couple hours of being out in the weather would get all the balls for both teams to the same temperature.

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You should probably take a closer look at your own arguments before calling others' lacking.

I'm not the one who made the poor comparison to cheating on a test. That was you.

Nobody is saying that cheating is the sole reason the Patriots beat the Colts.

I'd say it wasn't even a factor. Did you watch the game? The Colts, to put it bluntly, didn't belong on the same field as the Pats. Saying the deflated footballs weren't the "sole" reason the Pats won implies it played a role. That's just disingenuous. The Patriots were the better team and it wasn't even close.

That being said, the margin of victory is irrelevant in this case, because the issue at hand is solely whether or not the Patriots knowingly broke the rules. That's a problem whether they won by 1 or 101. Why have rules at all if breaking them is deemed irrelevant if you win by enough points?

That's a valid argument, but it then becomes a question of context. Did the alleged cheating allow the Patriots to gain an advantage? I'd say no. The advantage the Patriots had was being a more talented and better coached football team. The balls didn't factor into it.

Additionally, just saying that "manipulating footballs is widespread" is ignoring the context. Manipulating them before inspection, which is legal, is common, and usually revolves around getting to either extreme of the league's PSI limits. What the Patriots are accused of doing is manipulating the game balls after inspection and deflating them below the minimum allowable level. By doing so, they're breaking the rules to gain an unfair competitive advantage and deceiving the officials. That is cheating, like it or not.

Yeah, it's cheating. Like it's cheating when Aaron Rogers admittedly over-inflates his footballs. Or when the Panthers heat theirs up. Or how about when Brad Johnson admitted to paying someone off to scuff up the Buccaneers' footballs prior to Super Bowl XXXVII? Where's your outrage over that? Why haven't you, or anyone else, called for that Super Bowl victory to be revoked? Or for the Bucs to face some sort of equal punishment you and others are demanding of the Patriots?

http://www.tampabay.com/blogs/bucs/bucs-qb-johnson-paid-to-have-footballs-altered-before-sb-37/2214490

Oh wait. The Bucs are kind of hapless. So they don't make as convenient a target for someone whose primary motivation is being a contrarian who just really, really hates the Patriots. Like a Red Wings fan in Mississauga.

I also disagree with the idea that this is a manufactured controversy. The Patriots have a history of playing fast and loose with the rules and at least one known instance of cheating (Spygate). Another cheating scandal for a team with a history full of them is going to be a major story.

Incredibly disingenuous.

A history of playing fast and loose with the rules? You have one instance. One. Spygate. This would certainly qualify as a repeat offence, but you've been more then willing to crucify the team for something that hasn't even been proven yet. Assumed guilt. It's not a good thing. Finally, WSU151's last article seems to indicate that the current narrative isn't all that accurate.

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