The New England Patriots have made something of a reputation for themselves of pushing the boundaries of the rules in the National Football League and although you can absolutely argue the fairness of such a tactic, there's no arguing the recent run of success the Patriots have had under their current leadership.
Unfortunately for the Patriots however they were once again hit with some big time penalties from the NFL on Sunday when it was revealed that their film crew had been found guilty by an NFL investigation of filming the sidelines during a matchup between the Cincinnati Bengals and the Cleveland Browns. The incident reportedly took place last November and it has now resulted in the NFL handing down some pretty significant punishments, including bans, fines, and the loss of draft picks once again.
Here is the break down of those penalties as per ESPN:
$1.1 Million in club fines.
Loss of a third round pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.
The Patriots' television production crews will not be allowed to shoot any games during the 2020 season.
Senior club officials will have required training on league operation and game policies.
In addition to all of that former Patriots employee David Modillo, who had been suspended by the Patriots at the time of the NFL's investigation, is banned from all NFL facilities until further notice. Although this is speculation on my part it sounds like this could be a lifetime ban for Modillo.
Unfortunately this is not the first time the Patriots have been caught engaging in this type of behavior and no doubt this is why the NFL has come down on them so harshly, but I must admit I do feel for David Modillo in all of this. Modillo claims that he was filming the field as part of a profile on one of the organizations pro scouts and had even offered to delete the footage when confronted by Bengals security. He claims that the footage was never submitted to football operations, but again because of the Patriots history regarding situations like this his excuses were likely dismissed outright.
If he was indeed telling the truth here I must say this is a rather unfortunate situation for him.
Photo Credit: Keystone Press