As we spend the next two weeks waiting for the Super Bowl, keep this in mind: the Patriots were nailed cheating, and a key player was caught with HGH.
I remind of you this because probably no one else will. As the great Deadspin blog pointed out yesterday, the storylines will revolve around six themes: Boston and New York have a big rivalry and don’t really like each other; Eli Manning is Peyton Manning’s little brother; the Patriots are attempting to become the first team to make it through a season undefeated since the 1972 Miami Dolphins; Bill Belichick can become the second ever coach to win four Super Bowls; the Giants haven’t lost a game away from Giants Stadium since week one; and the two teams played each other the last week of the regular season in what was probably one of the better games of the season.
But we’re not going to be hearing about Bill Belichick being fined $500,000 and the Patriots loss of a number one draft pick next season because they cheated by illegally taping the New York Jets coaches sending defensive signals. And we’re definitely not going to be hearing about Patriot linebacker Rodney Harrison’s suspension for HGH use earlier this season.
Can you imagine how the sportswriters would be up in arms if, say, the Yankees were to make the World Series this season with Andy Pettitte pitching the clinching game and Jason Giambi hitting the Series winning home run? Congress would be calling for hearings, and there would be a call for an asterisk to be placed next to the Yankees if they were to win.
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But the Patriots are getting a free pass. Where is the uproar? Why the hypocrisy? Why the cries about how cheating in baseball is destroying the fabric of the nation, but the Patriots are being celebrated as the greatest of team of all time, and Jim Nantz and Phil Simms go out of their way every week to demand I applaud every movement of Tom Brady? And don’t get me started on Brady. I can just imagine the uproar that would arise if Alex Rodriguez were to have dumped the mother of his unborn child. But it’s laughed off with Tom Brady, when it’s even mentioned.
I don’t hate football. I don’t hate the Super Bowl. I will be watching it like every other red-blooded American male. But I’d like for it to get the same treatment from all of the moral jackasses who are currently beating up on baseball.
I’ll do my best, but my best just won’t be good enough. – John Royal