The temperature between the teams won't be much warmer -- not with Spygate II lurking as a sideshow.
On Friday, Patriots coach Bill Belichick said in an interview with NBCSports.com that the Jets never got permission to use a second, end-zone camera for last year's AFC divisional playoff game between the two teams.
This was in response to a report Wednesday in Newsday that
the Jets had a cameraman taping during the game at Foxborough. Gillette Stadium officials caught the cameraman in the end zone mezzanine level, told him to stop taping and leave the area. The camera was not confiscated.
The Jets acknowledged they did videotape the game from that vantage point, but said they had permission to do so. "We had asked for permission, it was granted, then that changed and we respect their decision. It's their stadium," Jets coach Eric Mangini said to the New York media. Mangini said the Jets had used an end-zone camera in their Nov. 12 game against the Patriots at Gillette, without issues. He also denied the Jets were trying to steal defensive signals.
Belichick did not address the issue until Friday, when he told NBCSports.com: "I was never asked for permission, nor was anyone in our video department asked for permission for a second end-zone camera."
Asked Friday about Belichick's claim that no permission had been granted, Jets spokesman Bruce Speight said, "We stand by our earlier comments that we received approval from the Patriots. We will just have to agree to disagree."
The original "Spygate" came about in September, when Jets security officials caught a Patriots employee taping the game from the field. His camera and its contents were confiscated, sealed in a container and sent to the NFL, which then fined Belichick $500,000 and docked the Patriots $250,000. It also cost the team a 2008 first-round draft choice, because the punishment was contingent on the Patriots making this year's playoffs.
Taping from the end zone is allowed by the NFL; the individual clubs decide whether to allow use of a second end-zone camera to film games.
"We do it every time we go on the road," Mangini said of the Jets' use of the end-zone camera, according to Newsday. "We ask for permission to do it. It's within the league rules, and when people ask us to do it [at Giants Stadium], we grant it as well."
The Jets do not plan on using a second, end-zone camera on Sunday, and have not asked for permission. When asked why, Mangini said he didn't believe it would be granted.