BOSTON (CBS) — It was a big day in the advancement of the story regarding the Patriots filming the Bengals’ sideline last week in Cleveland. First, reports of possible punishment surfaced. Then, the video itself aired nationally on TV.
Then, after the Patriots’ actual game against the Bengals began, there was this: The Patriots suspended the producer was in charge the day that a videographer filmed the Bengals’ sideline. The Boston Globe first reported the suspension, noting that Dave Mondillo is “a longtime full-time employee of Kraft Sports and Entertainment.”
Later on Sunday, Mondillo released a public statement, in which he stated, “I had no intention to provide footage to football operations, I did not provide any footage, and I was never asked to do so.”
Mondillo also explained why his crew shot the Bengals’ sideline for the feature about the advanced scout working the game for the Patriots.
“We interviewed and shot the Patriots scout sitting in a chair watching the action and panned back and forth from him to what he was seeing on the sidelines,” Mondillo said. “We also took footage of the field as the intent was to show what he was looking at when he looked through his binoculars watching the game.”
Mondillo added: “At that point, I went to the restroom and when I came back, my cameraman was told to stop shooting by someone from the NFL and he was joined by two others from the Bengals organization and an additional NFL security person. We stopped shooting immediately when asked to do so and cooperated fully. We had a detailed exchange about who we were and why we were there and what they wanted us to do. I gave the Sony SXS card to NFL security and we complied with their request, packed up and went home.”
The league is still in the process of investigating the matter, with commissioner Roger Goodell promising a “thorough” review earlier this week.
The incident stems from a Kraft Sports and Entertainment videographer in the press box in Cleveland last week to shoot a “Do Your Job” special on an advanced scout who was watching the game as part of his normal duties. That videographer turned the camera toward the Bengals sideline when the game was taking place, which is a violation of NFL rules.
The Patriots admitted that the incident took place, indicating the videographer filmed the sideline without knowing it was illegal.