Former Patriots assistant coach and former New York Jets head coach Eric Mangini expressed dismay today over the ever cloudy shadow that is “spygate.”
Mangini, who alerted the NFL in 2007 that the the Patriots were taping opponents while head coach of the Jets, took to ESPN’s NFL Live program to convey his disappointment in how the scandal has continued to plague the franchise, particularly after Baltimore Ravens coach John Harbaugh called the Patriots’ three Super Bowls tainted.
“It’s regret, it’s disappointment, it’s all of those things,” Mangini said. “Because I know what it took to win those Super Bowls and I have so much respect for the people that were involved there. I’m disappointed that this is what it’s translated into.
“Never in a million years did I expect it to play out like this,” Mangini continued. “This is one of those situations where I didn’t want them to do the things they were doing. I didn’t think it was any kind of significant advantage, but I wasn’t going to give them the convenience of doing it in our stadium, and I wanted to shut it down. But there was no intent to get the league involved. There was no intent to have the landslide that it has become.”
Harbaugh later backtracked on his comments, but that didn’t stop ESPN personality and former Patriots linebacker Tedy Bruschi from defending the franchise. Mangini, who appeared with Bruschi on NFL Live, was upset that Bruschi had been put in a position to defend the Patriots as well.
“To have guys like Tedy have to defend the championships that we earned in New England, and to have anything taken away from the Kraft family, from coach Belichick, and the players and coaches that have meant so much to me, never in a million years did I think it was going to translate into what it was going to translate into,” Mangini said. “And it doesn’t tarnish what we achieved there. It doesn’t tarnish what they achieved after the fact. I think when you look at the history of success that they had after that incident, it’s pretty obvious that it didn’t play any type of significant role in the victories we had or the success that we had.”