The New England Patriots couldn’t have picked a better time to sign quarterback Cam Newton this summer.
Mere minutes after it was reported the Patriots would sign Newton, news broke that New England would be fined $1.1 million and lose a third-round pick after the NFL concluded its investigation into the team’s television crew taping the Cincinnati Bengals’ sideline in December.
All of that news broke on the night of Sunday, June 28, but Patriots head coach Bill Belichick wasn’t asked about the punishment until Friday morning.
“Obviously, the league had a long investigation on that,” Belichick said Friday on a video conference call. “But really, we’re just looking ahead. We have a lot of things in front of us here, especially getting ready for the season and all that. So, we’ve moved on. We’ll deal with what we have to do in front of us here. Just let everything go in the rearview mirror and move ahead.”
The Patriots released a statement in December accepting “full responsibility for the actions of our production crew.” The Patriots have maintained the team’s football staff had no involvement in taping the Bengals’ sideline during a game against the Cleveland Browns and that the production crew was there filming a “Do Your Job” documentary on an advance scout.
The controversy was dubbed “Spygate 2” by some, referencing another scandal when the Patriots were fined $250,000 and lost a first-round pick in 2007 for videotaping New York Jets coaches giving defensive signals during a game.
The Patriots will be out a third-round pick in next year’s draft because of the actions of a team employee, but Belichick has moved on from the ordeal.