Back in 2014, the NFL and Microsoft agreed on a deal that would allow the Surface Pro tablet to be used on the sidelines and press box by every NFL team
. These modified units have a special case to protect them should any of the action on the field carry over to the sidelines. It also apparently protects the Surface Pro from getting tossed into the stands, which happened yesterday during the AFC Championship game between the Kansas City Chiefs and New England Patriots.
During yesterday's game, in a fit of rage, New England head coach Bill Belichick mistreated his Surface Pro by throwing it on the ground, and hurling the tablet into the stands. A tweet from Microsoft's Chief Product Officer Panos Panay
(via Windows Central
) includes a video of the incident, and also says that Belichick's Surface Pro is just fine. In his tweet, the executive tells those who viewed the Surface Pro being manhandled, "Don't worry about the Surface Pro, we quality test for this exact scenario."
Belichick has been vocally opposed to the use of the tablet since the NFL made the deal with Microsoft. In 2016, the coach said that he was done using the Surface Pro
and would return to the old method used by coaches of viewing Polaroid pictures of opponent's offensive and defensive formations. Black and white photos would be snapped from the press box by other coaches, and wired down to the sidelines. Belichick complained about the extra equipment required to use the Surface Pro and said the tablets offered "no consistency."
Despite the outburst, which was seen by millions of viewers watching the game on television or streaming it on their mobile devices, Belichick walked off the field victorious. Led by 41-year old superstar Quarterback Tom Brady, the Patriots outlasted the Chiefs 37-31 in overtime. New England heads to its third consecutive Super Bowl, this time to take on the L.A. Rams. If you are attending the contest in Atlanta on February 3rd, you might want to get seats as close as possible to the New England sideline. This way, you might be able to score a free Surface Pro tablet if Coach Belichick has another temper tantrum.