BOSTON (CBS) — On Tuesday morning, ESPN’s Outside the Lines released a lengthy investigative report detailing the Patriots’ 2007 “Spygate” scandal. The report interviewed many “current and former” Patriots employees and more than 90 league officials, delving into the details of the scandal and investigation that followed.
In response to the report and its many allegations against the Patriots for their alleged systematic recording of opponents’ signals, the team released a statement. Here it is in full:READ MORE: Phoenix Police Say Foul Play Not Suspected In Death Of Hiker Angela Tramonte Of Saugus
“The New England Patriots have never filmed or recorded another team’s practice or walkthrough. The first time we ever heard of such an accusation came in 2008, the day before Super Bowl XLII, when the Boston Herald reported an allegation from a disgruntled former employee. That report created a media firestorm that extended globally and was discussed incessantly for months.READ MORE: Will Massachusetts Require Face Masks In Schools This Fall? Here's The Latest State Guidance
“It took four months before that newspaper retracted its story and offered the team a front and back page apology for the damage done. Clearly, the damage has been irreparable. As recently as last month, over seven years after the retraction and apology was issued, ESPN issued the following apology to the Patriots for continuing to perpetuate the myth: ‘On two occasions in recent weeks, SportsCenter incorrectly cited a 2002 report regarding the New England Patriots and Super Bowl XXXVI. That story was found to be false, and should not have been part of our reporting. We apologize to the Patriots organization.’
“This type of reporting over the past seven years has led to additional unfounded, unwarranted and, quite frankly, unbelievable allegations by former players, coaches and executives. None of which have ever been substantiated, but many of which continue to be propagated. The New England Patriots are led by an owner whose well-documented efforts on league-wide initiatives – from TV contracts to preventing a work stoppage – have earned him the reputation as one of the best in the NFL.MORE NEWS: Lawmaker Proposes Universal Mask Mandate In All Massachusetts Schools
“For the past 16 years, the Patriots have been led by one of the league’s all-time greatest coaches and one of its all-time greatest quarterbacks. It is disappointing that some choose to believe in myths, conjecture and rumors rather than giving credit for the team’s successes to Coach Belichick, his staff and the players for their hard work, attention to detail, methodical weekly preparation, diligence and overall performance.”