Falcons GM Thomas Dimitroff mentioned during a recent interview with 680 The Fan that they are bracing for the potential loss of a draft pick stemming from their decision to pipe in artificial crowd noise during games.
“We are just so full of scenarios and that’s kind of how we approach the offseason as it is,” Dimitroff said, via D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal Constitution. “We’ve been very detailed on how we are going to approach things if in fact we have availability at certain points in the draft.”
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported earlier in the week that officials for the Browns and Falcons were informed at this week’s owners meetings that the discipline stemming from their rules violations is expected to be announced next week.
According to a source that spoke to Schefter, the discipline is expected to be “severe.”
“I do not know at this point, officially,” Dimitroff said. “I have not gotten word from the league. I believe that we’ll be expecting something. Usually, when you get indication from the league it is via print. . . .
“I’m reading the same things that you are. Obviously, it’s been a process for us.”
The Falcons have already admitted to piping in artificial crowd noise during the 2013 and 2014 seasons while the opposing teams were huddling.
”It’s not really a fine line,” owner Arthur Blank told The Associated Press. ‘‘I think what we’ve done in 2013 and 2014 was wrong. Anything that affects the competitive balance and fairness on the field, we’re opposed to, as a league, as a club and as an owner. It’s obviously embarrassing but beyond embarrassing it doesn’t represent our culture and what we’re about.”
Previous reports have said that there’s a chance the Falcons could be docked a draft pick for this situation, so it’s really not all that surprising to hear that the team is bracing to possibly lose a selection.
We’ll have more updates regarding discipline for the Browns and Falcons as the news is available.