No joke, I was in the middle of throwing together a really forced pun about Star Wars sequels when Pats Pulpit's own venerable wordsmith Bernd Buchmasser, who's been penning those Super Bowl recaps all week, threw out a lede for this story that tells you all you need to know.
"Punxsutawney Faulk, if he opens his eyes and sees the Patriots in the Super Bowl it means two more weeks of cheating accusations."
So, this one's for you, Bernd:
On Thursday, the former St. Louis Ram (awww, but aren't they all former St. Louis Rams now?) and NFL MVP took the opportunity (when does he not?) during a Super Bowl media session to dish on his favorite topic: his unshakable conviction that the Patriots taped the Rams' walkthrough before the 2001 Super Bowl, and that's why they lost.
Speaking of things on tape, (sorry, couldn't resist), here's Faulk!
Marshall Faulk is not well. https://t.co/YvlDHnnDSe— Michael Hurley (@michaelFhurley) February 2, 2017
Marshall Faulk still believes the Patriots taped the Rams' walkthrough before Super Bowl 36.— Christopher Price (@cpriceNFL) February 2, 2017
Ok, well, let's be fair, can't just be dropping random clips of an interview. Here's some more of what Faulk had to say (as per Bleacher Report):
"(The practice) before the Super Bowl. The guy who worked for the Patriots. If you remember, that was someone mysteriously living in Hawaii, who made his way back to the stats and delivered the tapes," Faulk Said. "(Roger) Goodell then watched those tapes and said there wasn't enough there to deem anything being done."
"Now, I didn't see what was on the tapes, because we didn't get to see that. The only thing I could say is that they taped our practice. That was wrong...I don't believe anything. I'm just telling you the facts."
(deep breaths, everyone, deep breaths)
What Marshall's more than likely referring to is a 2008 story that came out in the Boston Herald based on a tip from an anonymous source saying that the Patriots had taped the Rams walkthrough before the Super Bowl. 2008, of course, was barely a year removed from Spygate, which, obviously, means for a lot of people, Faulk likely included, that it's proof positive New England cheated him and fellow Patriots truther Kurt Warner out of a championship.
One tiny problem, though; the Herald ended up redacting the story barely three months later, when it turned out the "anonymous source" we referenced a second ago had taken them for a ride.
But don't take my word for it, let's hear it from the Boston Herald in their official apology (who, honestly, deserve credit for owning their mistake):
"On Feb 2, 2008, the Boston Herald reported that a member of the New England Patriots' video staff taped the St. Louis Rams' walkthrough on the day before Super Bowl XXXVI. While the Boston Herald based its Feb 2., 2008, report on sources it believed to be credible, we now know that this report was false, and that no tape of the walkthrough ever existed."
Ah, what the heck, I like pictures. You like pictures? Me too! Here's the good stuff:
You have to be fair, though, Marshall Faulk isn't the only one walking around still treating this like the gospel truth. ESPN still believed it, too, or at least someone there did, because they aired the original Herald story multiple times on Sportscenter in freaking 2015 and eventually had to apologize - surely you remember the infamous midnight apology for that one, right?
Look, if anyone knows what it's like to be on the losing end of a crushing upset, it's the Patriots. We here at the Pulpit can empathize. We really can.
Now that that's out of the way, get your facts straight or GTFO.