In his renowned work, The Mikado, William Schwenck Gilbert once decreed “Let the punishment fit the crime.”
It can be left to individual discretion as to whether the National Football League adheres to this philosophy when it comes to the New England Patriots.
On Sunday, the NFL announced that they will, indeed, fine the Patriots $1.1 million and took away a third-round pick in the 2021 draft among punishments for their television crew’s filming the field and sideline during a Dec. 8 game between the Cincinnati Bengals and Cleveland Browns, league sources said.
In addition, the Patriots’ television production crews will not be allowed to shoot any games during the 2020 season, and senior club officials will undergo required training on league operation and game policies.
The NFL also banned former Kraft Productions employee David Mondillo, from NFL facilities until further notice. Prior to the league’s discipline, Mondillo was terminated by the Patriots.
On December 19, 2019, the Patriots issued a statement admitting that their production crew inappropriately filmed the field and sideline. The crew was credentialed by the Browns to shoot video for a Patriots web series called “Do Your Job,” but the Patriots did not inform the Bengals or the NFL, which they called an “unintended oversight.”
The statement, in its entirety reads as follows:
As reported by ESPN’s Mike Reiss, a Patriots spokesperson confirmed the team will not contest the penalties.
–Mike D’Abate is a Managing Editor and Columnist for Full Press Coverage. He covers the New England Patriots and provides NFL editorial content. He is also the host of the Locked On Patriots podcast. Follow him on Twitter @mdabateFPC