LONDON ENGLAND - OCTOBER 31: Josh McDaniels head coach of Denver Broncos looks on during the NFL International Series match between Denver Broncos and San Francisco 49ers at Wembley Stadium on October 31 2010 in London England. This is the fourth occasion where a regular season NFL match has been played in London. (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)
I'll admit, reading the following headline made me a bit sick to my stomach -
Obviously, the entire SpyGate situation was a black eye for the NFL and for the New England Patriots. While I believed, even at the time, that little can be learned from such taping, it IS against the rules and rules are in place for a reason. The NFL came down hard on the Patriots, stripping the team of a first-round pick in 2008 and fining the team and Head Coach Bill Belichick a total of $750,000. To the NFL it is no laughing matter.
That's why today's news is so concerning to me. I am not one to knee-jerk, as many of you all know. I try and stay as even-keeled as possible, not allowing myself to get too high or get too low. I want to wait for all facts to come out before making any absolute opinion on the matter. This is a Broncos site, however, one of the largest on the web. It cannot be ignored, and the NFL doesn't open investigations for no reason.
If these allegations prove to be true, sweeping changes need to be made. When something like this happens - if it indeed did happen - it is the blame of everyone in the organization - whether they actually knew about it or not. That starts with the Head Coach. Josh McDaniels hired the individual at the center of the investigation - Steve Scarnecchia - as the Broncos director of video operations when he was hired in 2009. Scarnecchia worked with the Patriots from 2001 to 2005 and was involved in that investigation as well. No matter Scarnecchia's involvement then, it would make it a risky hire.
The pride I fell being a fan of the Denver Broncos is very important to me. Whether it is players getting in trouble with the law or coaches breaking ethics-based League rules, I have little time for anyone that paints the Broncos in a negative light or embarrass the team.
At that point it isn't about wins or losses, game plans, schemes or personnel. It is about something much more important - integrity. When I wear my Broncos hat, or jersey, I do so not because of the Win/Loss record, but because I am proud to be a Broncos fan. Proud to be a fan of what that represents. Wins and Losses are only a small part. When the integrity of the team comes into question - and those questions and allegations turn out to be true, it is UNACCEPTABLE and IMMEDIATE ACTION should be taken.
I want to STRESS - that we should wait to see what the NFL finds and get ALL THE FACTS. I am hoping we won't see 1000 fan posts calling for action before we know the facts. It was important to me, however, to state my position SHOULD the NFL find rules were broken. I take my allegiance to the Broncos, as a fan, very seriously. Let's just hope it is much ado about nothing.