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Specter wants to ask NFL: Were Eagles cheated?

Were the Eagles cheated out of a Super Bowl victory?

Arlen Specter wants answers about the 2005 Super Bowl.
Arlen Specter wants answers about the 2005 Super Bowl.Read more

Were the Eagles cheated out of a Super Bowl victory?

That's the first question Sen. Arlen Specter hopes to be asking the NFL today, he stated unequivocally this morning on WIP radio (610 AM).

"Absolutely, that's going to be my lead question, Angelo," he said to sports-talk host Angelo Cataldi.

In November, Specter said, he wrote to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell after the Patriots were found to have violated league rules by videotaping signals by New York Jets coaches during an early season game.

Specter wanted to know whether the league had investigated the 2005 Super Bowl, which the Eagles lost, 24-21, to the Patriots.

Specter, the ranking Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, never got a reply, and was far from satisfied when details emerged about the league's investigation.

The league's probe consisted primarily of asking the Patriots what they'd done wrong, "really allowing the Patriots to investigate themselves," Specter said.

The league never even interviewed Matt Walsh, the man who made the tapes, said Pennsylvania's senior senator.

Specter, a former Philadelphia district attorney, is no stranger to investigations. His "single-bullet theory" about the Kennedy assassination was a long ridiculed part of the Warren Commission report, but over the years has gained more respect among experts.

When Specter heard that the NFL had destroyed the tapes from the Jets game, he wrote the commissioner again.

Again, he got no reply.

On Friday, Goodell told reporters he did plan to speak with Specter. As of this morning, however, Goodell had not contacted Specter's staff, the senator said.

On Saturday, a new twist was added to the intrigue as it relates to the Eagles. A Boston Herald report alleged that Walsh videotaped the St. Louis Rams' final walk-through before the team played New England in the 2002 Super Bowl.

The Patriot beat the Rams, 20-17.

"If they were filming the walk-though in 2002 and they were stealing the signals in 2007, what happened in 2005 with the Eagles?" he said.

Specter said his concerns about league conduct extend to a variety of matters, from copyright infringement to sticking taxpayers with stadium bills to monopolizing viewership of some games with the league's NFL Network.

"It's part of a bigger picture," he said. "... The league really needs some accountability, and I intend to push for it."