HeadSetGate Odds – Is It Anything?

HeadSetGate Odds – Is It Anything?

Sascha P.No comments

Ugh, the word “scandal” is being used all too liberally these days. I’m not a Patriots fan; I’m not a Tom Brady fan; I’m not a Bill Belichick fan. But c’mon, “HeadSetGate” – the latest “controversy” to engulf New England – is a lot of hot air. [Insert obligatory joke about how that hot air should have been in the game balls.] Yes, the Steelers had problems with their headsets during last night’s season-opening loss to the Pats. No, that doesn’t look good on the heels of DeflateGate and the SpyGate revival. But let’s look at things objectively for a moment. The Patriots don’t provide the headsets, the league does; and New England also had issues with its headsets throughout the game.

In all likelihood, nothing nefarious was going on, and the league even explained how the issue arose:

In the first quarter of tonight’s game, the Pittsburgh coaches experienced interference in their headsets caused by a stadium power infrastructure issue, which was exacerbated by the inclement weather. The coaches’ communications equipment, including the headsets, is provided by the NFL for both clubs use on game day. Once the power issue was addressed, the equipment functioned properly with no additional issues.

But everyone and their tech support person has already jumped on the possibility that the Pats were, once again, circumventing the rules. So one thing is evident: every slight misstep by New England, and every stroke of bad luck, is going to result in a new “Gate”. I guess that’s the price you pay when you lead the league in cheatsmanship (by a wide margin).

Trying to predict who or what will be responsible for the next “Gate” is like trying pick a rotten egg from a carton. You don’t know which one’s gone bad until you crack them all open. But we’re all about setting odds around here, so let’s dive in!

New England Patriots Controversy Odds:

Odds on which Patriots player/official will be the subject of the next cheating controversy:

Bill Belichick (head coach): 3/2

  • Bill runs a tight ship. The buck stops here on most matters. That said, he’s proven pretty good at insulating himself from the most recent controversies.

Robert Kraft (owner): 4/1

  • If the buck were to stop anywhere other than Belichick’s doorstep, it should be with team owner Robert Kraft. There hasn’t been any suggestion that he was involved in any of the cheating, heretofore. But maybe that means he’s really good at it.

Matt Patricia (defensive coordinator) and/or Josh McDaniel (offensive coordinator): 5/1

  • Belichick’s right-hand men probably have their fingers in the same fires as the big boss, right? And their more likely to be scapegoated by the team than Belichick.

Jonathan Kraft (team president): 20/1

Rob Gronkowski (tight end): 100/1

  • Gronk has his foibles, but cheating isn’t one of them.

LeGarrette Blount (running back): 100/1

  • Unless the bar for “cheating controversy” is lowered to getting your blaze on, it won’t be Blount, either.

Odds there will be a ball inflation controversy during a Patriots game this season:

  • Yes: 9/1
  • No: 1/9

Odds the next Patriots cheating controversy arises due to:

 … another NFL team complaining to the league: 3/2

… the media uncovering a “smoking gun”: 2/1

… another in-game incident (like HeadSetGate): 5/2

… a “tell-all” by a former player : 8/1

… a “tell-all” by a former coach: 20/1

Odds on the outcome of HeadSetGate:

No evidence is found against the Patriots: 1/4

The NFL apologizes/admits wrongdoing for not disabling the Patriots headsets: 5/1

Evidence is found that Patriots were responsible: 20/1

Odds that no more Patriot cheating controversies make headlines this season: 9/1

  • HeadSetGate has proven that merit isn’t a prereq for making headlines. In the age of the 24-hour news cycle, something is going to come up. And odds are it’s going to be dumb.

Over/under on the number of NFL controversies dubbed “Gates” by the media this season: 2.5

  • It seems to be the only option. So the real question is how many cheating-type scandals will there be?


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