Deion Sanders may want to tread lightly. Tony Dungy is a Hall of Famer and well-respected, but that didn’t stop Deion Sanders from accusing the former Indianapolis Colts head coach of his own gate/scandal.

On Sunday night on NFL Network in a discussion with LaDainian Tomlinson, LT stated that an asterisk should be affixed to New England in the record books because of Spygate, the 2007 controversy that deemed the Patriots were guilty of illegally videotaping signals of the New York Jets.

At that point, Sanders accused the Colts of stealing signs.

"Those same critics, did they say anything about the wins that the Indianapolis Colts had? You want to talk about that, too? Because they were getting everybody’s signals,’’ the NFL Network analyst said. “Come on, you don’t walk up to the line and look over here and the man on the sideline giving you the defense that they’ve stolen the plays of.

“We all knew . . . Everybody in the NFL knew. We just didn’t let the fans know. That was real and that was happening in Indy.’’

Dungy didn’t refute Sanders’ accusation of the Colts’ stealing signals, but took issue with the description of the allegation.

“I think we have to go back to what is cheating,’’ Dungy said. “People accusing us of cheating? I don’t think that’s the case. Stealing signals? You can go back to the 1800s in baseball, you can go anywhere there were signals done and people were looking and watching and trying to get signals.’’

Stealing an opposing team’s signals, per Dungy, has “been part of football.’’

“Deion, I’m sure on every scouting report that he ever got, the first thing that’s on there on the defensive scouting reports , who is the live signal caller, who signals the personnel groups in,’’ Dungy said. “And that’s what happened. And you looked over there because you wanted to know as a defensive player: Is it going to be three wide receivers? Is it going to be two tight ends? Who’s in the game? There’s a person over there signaling and Deion Sanders and every other defensive player would look at the offensive sideline to get that signal.

“That’s all part of the game, but doing it legally and illegally, that’s the difference. I hope Deion is not saying we did something illegally. Of course we got signals when we had an OPPORTUNITY to do that, and so did Deion.’’

This could get interesting, but I’m siding with Dungy. If I’m a player, and I can get the jump on a sign or get an inkling of what that play is, I’m passing that information along.

Videotaping and illegally obtaining the sign is a totally different thing though, and it has no place in sports.

-- ThaCover2


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