Well, after I spent yesterday morning rambling about looking forward and getting ready for Dallas Week and so on, much of the rest of the day was spent on pretty much the exact opposite. It would be nice to just let the whole tampering accusations thing recede into the distance, but there is one update of note.
When I tried to speak to Jason La Canfora about the issue yesterday, he mentioned that he couldn’t talk until he had finished speaking with his higher-ups at the Post, and a statement from Sports Editor Emilio Garcia-Ruiz was posted on the Redskins Insider blog last night. An excerpt:
Jason did not make any sort of complaint whatsoever. (In fact, reporters cannot charge teams with violations of NFL rules. Only other teams can file charges like tampering.) He referred to Cerrato’s questions about Raiders coach Lane Kiffin only to provide context for the question he was asking. He did not write about the issue.
We called the league today to confirm that Jason had not charged the Redskins with tampering. Here’s what NFL spokesman Michael Signora had to say: “Jason LaCanfora called our office and said that Vinny Cerrato was talking in specifics on his radio show about the Raiders’ coaching position. Jason wanted to know if that could possibly be a tampering issue. Jason has been told that there is no general prohibition against publicly talking about another team’s players or staff. It routinely occurs throughout the league.
Mike Florio at ProFootballTalk.com weighed in on that post, speculating that La Canfora was trying to indirectly call the league’s attention to the potential issue.
And in saying that, we’re not defending Cerrato. We’ve criticized him over the years as much as anyone. But we know a little indirect poop-stirring when we see it, and we think that there’s a chance La Canfora made the inquiry hoping that it would get back to Cerrato, and strike a nerve.
Florio has pretty much made his name by being one of the league’s great indirect poop-stirrers, that’s for sure.
Which, as far as I know, is where things stand now. It may seem hugely dysfunctional, but when it comes to acrimony between league executives and beat reporters, I think the Raiders take the title at the moment.