The New England Patriots have been punished by
the NFL for videotaping an opponent's offensive and defensive
Patriots coach Bill Belichick has been fined the league maximum
of $500,000, and the team has been ordered to pay $250,000 for
illegally taping the New York Jets' sidelines during last Sunday's
38-14 win at the Meadowlands.
Commissioner Roger Goodell also ordered the team to give up next
year's first-round draft choice if it reaches the playoffs and
second- and third-round picks if it doesn't.
In a letter to the Patriots, Goodell said the episode
"represents a calculated and deliberate attempt to avoid
longstanding rules designed to encourage fair play and promote
honest competition on the playing field."