Friday, September 30, 2011

Somebody Is Stealing Snap Counts From The Cowboys? Easy Solution!

Apparently all those bad snaps from the Dallas Cowboys last week during the Washington Redskins game were not entirely due to bad communication between Tony Romo and Phil Costa (the center).

The Cowboys claimed that the Redskins defensive line was mimicking the Cowboys snap count and throwing off Costa, inducing him to snap the ball while Romo was making adjustments behind him.

The new collective bargaining agreement specifically allows for television networks to place a microphone on any offensive lineman to enhance sound for viewers.  Previously, the umpire had worn a mic, but once he was moved behind the offensive backfield lats year, the networks needed a new spot to mic.

However, in what seems to be a direct response to complaints from the Cowboys, the NFL today released a memo:
"Clubs will have the option of having the microphone placed in the pads of the starting center OR in the pads of both starting guards. If the club chooses the option of wiring both starting guards, the microphone will be opened on the pads of only one of the guards at any time ..."
You know what also could stop a team from stealing snap counts? A silent snap count.

Typically a team will use a silent snap count when they're concerned about crowd noise.  It's needed when a team goes to Seattle or Indianapolis to play a game.  It is rather unusual for a home team to take this up, but the Cowboys won't be the only ones to have to do that this year if the mics stay on the offensive line.

I'm not really sure that the game is truly enhanced that much by having mics on the offensive line.  I do actually think it's enhanced by hearing snap counts and hard counts in an effort to draw the defense offside.

I'm not quite sure why the television networks won this particular battle, but I don't think the war over player mics is over yet.

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