Back in December, the New England Patriots found themselves in trouble for allegedly videotaping the Cincinnati Bengals' sideline. The NFL initially had hopes of moving on from this issue rather quickly, but the investigation has taken a few months.
Obviously this isn't the first time that New England has been involved in a messy situation of this magnitude. Head coach Bill Belichick denied responsibility when the news first broke, saying he has “absolutely nothing to do” with it.
According to Ben Volin of The Boston Globe, there is no timetable for the release of NFL's findings. However, the league's investigation is wrapping up and we'll soon find out what Roger Goodell believes is a fair punishment.
The Patriots have reportedly cooperated with the league throughout its investigation. They claim the illegal taping was a mistake from a video producer working for Kraft Sports Productions.
Here's what Volin had to say about a potential punishment for the Patriots, via The Boston Globe:
But many league observers still expect the Patriots to receive punishment — potentially a fine up to $500,000 and a loss of a mid- or late-round draft pick — because they have a history with illegal videotaping.
Volin also reported that a Bengals source is surprised the investigation has lingered into February.
With free agency less than a month away, the Patriots probably would like to move on from this situation.
During the week of the Super Bowl, Goodell said "Our responsibility is to make sure we’re being extremely thorough." We'll find out just how thorough the NFL's investigation was in the coming weeks.