If the undefeated Patriots need bulletin board material for their playoff game Saturday night against the Jaguars, they have it now.
If Jacksonville defensive lineman Paul Spicer had his way, the Patriots wouldn't have even qualified for the playoffs because of the Spygate scandal.
"Do like the NCAA and kick them out of the playoffs or something," Spicer told The Associated Press after news of the scandal broke. "Put them on probation; they can't go to no playoff games. Roger Goodell has definitely enforced some new rules. He's been hard on players. Now let's see how hard he's going to be with a team."
The Patriots lost their 2008 first-round draft pick, the team was fined $250,000 and Bill Belichick was docked $500,000 as a result of the scandal, in which they were caught videotaping New York Jets coaches' signals during the teams' Week 1 matchup. New England still has one 2008 first-round pick as a result of their trade with the San Francisco 49ers during the 2007 draft.
"This ain't news. I've heard it in the past. They finally got caught. The Patriots got caught. They're busted," he also told the AP at the time.
Appearing on ESPN2's First Take on Monday morning, Spicer stood by his comments.
"I don't regret saying what I said. I'm a man of my word. I always speak my mind and that's what I felt at that time," Spicer said.
In the long run, Spicer said Spygate doesn't matter when it comes to Saturday night's playoff game.
"It doesn't really matter ... What matters is getting out there and playing football. It still comes down to catching the football, tackling, blocking."
Spicer said he wasn't worried about giving the Patriots added motivation for their playoff game.
"If they got to bring up something said so long ago, let that be their motivational tool," he said.
Patriots defensive end Jarvis Green responded to the criticism to ESPN Radio on Tuesday.
"To me it was a little disrespectful," he said. "We went out there and played still. If they say we cheated, we removed the camera Week 1. What happened in the next 15 weeks of football? We finished the season off making history, so whatever he's talking about, he can keep it to himself."