Patriots

Report: NFL to seriously consider placing Antonio Brown on paid leave

Report: NFL to seriously consider placing Antonio Brown on paid leave

Antonio Brown's debut with the New England Patriots may be placed on hold.

The NFL "will give serious consideration" to placing Brown on paid leave by putting him on the commissioner's exempt list, the Washington Post's Mark Maske reported Wednesday morning.

The Patriots wide receiver was accused of rape and sexual assault Tuesday night in a civil lawsuit filed by his former trainer, Britney Taylor, in Florida. Brown has denied the allegations via his lawyer and reportedly plans to countersue Taylor.

The Patriots said in a statement Tuesday they're aware of the lawsuit and the league's plans to investigate, and it sounds like Brown's discipline may be out of their hands.

In an appearance Tuesday night on NBC Sports Boston's "Boston Sports Tonight," Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer also suggested the commissioner's exempt list could be a possibility for Brown based on how the league has handled similar cases.

"I think the first step is determining how credible the allegations are," Breer said. "And if they are credible, it would seem to me that this is what the commissioner's exempt list is for.

"If you want to go back to 2014 when Ray Rice, Adrian Peterson and Greg Hardy happened, it was sort of used as a tool to take any decision out of the team's hands and allow the league to investigate and the law enforcement process to take place."

Rice (arrested and charged with aggravated assault), Peterson (charged with reckless or negligent injury to a child) and Hardy (arrested for assault and communicating threats) all were placed on the commissioner's exempt list as the NFL investigated their cases.

ESPN's Adam Schefter reported Wednesday that Brown's accuser is planning to meet with the NFL next week.

A player placed on the commissioner's exempt list cannot practice or attend games but can attend meetings and be at the team's facility if the team allows.

It's unclear whether the NFL will make a decision on Brown prior to the Patriots' game against the Miami Dolphins on Sunday, according to Maske.

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Report: Patriots suspend videographer responsible for filming Bengals sideline

Report: Patriots suspend videographer responsible for filming Bengals sideline

The New England Patriots reportedly have disciplined the videographer responsible for filming the Cincinnati Bengals sideline during their Week 14 game in Cleveland.

Dave Mondillo, a longtime employee of Kraft Sports Productions, was suspended by the organization last week according to Ben Volin of The Boston Globe.

NESN's Doug Kyed reports Patriots president Jonathan Kraft had a closed-door meeting at the TV production office Monday, and the videographer hasn't returned since then.

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Video footage of the sideline taping, along with audio of the conversation between the Patriots video crew and Bengals security, aired on FOX Sports prior to Sunday's Pats-Bengals matchup. The Patriots have maintained that the team has nothing to do with the production crew, though they've admitted the videographers unknowingly violated NFL rules by filming the sideline.

In its official statement, New England claims the filming was for a segment of Patriots.com's "Do Your Job" series.

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell said Wednesday there is no set timetable for when the investigation will be concluded, but the Patriots' history of illegal videotaping will be considered.

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Bengals 'not happy' that Patriots' videotaping is being treated 'like a joke'

Bengals 'not happy' that Patriots' videotaping is being treated 'like a joke'

While the Patriots await word of discipline for videotaping the Bengals' sideline this week, the team they're facing Sunday is hoping for a stiff punishment.

Appearing on Pregame Live before the New England-Cincinnati game Sunday, the MMQB's Albert Breer detailed what the Bengals are thinking.

"I will say this — the Bengals are not happy," Breer said. "I know that they've taken offense to people treating this like a joke. And look, there's probably a little bit of an inferiority complex, and I think part of this is, 'You better not give these guys preferential treatment because their owner is Robert Kraft and our owner is Mike Brown.' 

"I think when this thing started to turn into a joke on Tuesday and Wednesday, the coaches who are involved here, their radar went straight up — 'Wait a minute, we don't want to let this narrative get to that point' — so the Bengals, I will tell you, are not happy about the way this was handled. And I think that if the league doesn't come down on the Patriots here, you could see retaliation from Cincinnati."

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On Sunday morning, Jay Glazer aired exclusive footage of what the Patriots shot — and an interaction with an employee from Bengals security. The video shows footage of the Cincinnati sideline — something that's explicitly against NFL rules.

"What's on that video is basically shots of the sideline, where you see the coaches and then it pans out and you see players running on and off the field," said Breer before the video aired on FOX Sports. "This is part of what pro scouts do; they try to pick up on personnel signals so they can see substitution patterns. I've talked to a bunch of pro scouts who said that's exactly what they're doing.

"Now the Patriots' excuse could be — and this would make sense — well, the cameraman, the producer went to our advance scout, asked him what he does, then he goes and says 'OK, this is what this guy does, I'm going to go get video of it.' Totally makes sense.

"The problem is, if you're the New England Patriots, the one piece of equipment that no one under your employ can get caught with is a video camera. There is one thing that you cannot get caught with in this organization, whether you're freelance, whether you're full-time, no matter who you are — is a video camera."

And there's the problem for the Patriots. Having already been disciplined by the league once for illegally videotaping an opponent, another related instance could lead to harsher penalties from the league office. 

Now whether those penalties include fines and/or draft picks? We'll have to wait and see.