Adam Schefter Says Criticism He’s Receiving is “Fair”

ESPN press room photo

Wednesday was kind of a slow sports day. The Flyers signed a fighter, who will hopefully clobber Tom Wilson this year. Ben Simmons reportedly did an individual workout away from the Sixers, and that’s about it.

The big sports story was a media story, with Adam Schefter’s name surfacing in the emails collected during the Washington Football Team investigation. In a writeup from the LA Times, it was revealed that Schefter sent then-Washington team president Bruce Allen a full draft of a story he was writing about the 2011 lockout. He referred to Allen as “Mr. Editor” and sought information on what should added, tweaked, or changed.

ESPN released a statement from Schefty himself:

Schefter is right that you typically verify facts with a source before a story runs. Sometimes you follow up and say “hey, just wanted to double check to make sure this is accurate.” It is, however, considered a violation to send somebody an entire copy of something and let them take a look at it before publishing.

The statement above is palatable, because as we pointed out yesterday on the site, Adam Schefter is not a journalist. He’s an insider who traffics in information, then breaks it. He’s the ultimate leaker, aka the antithesis of Peter Arnett reporting from Baghdad while explosions are going off in the distance. But the service Schefter provides has value to the NFL consumer, and he crosses admittedly already-blurry lines in order to work sources and curry favor and acquire the information that fans seek.

There are a lot of things in life that come to us in a neat package, where if we knew the process in which the packaging was done, we’d recoil. That goes for sausage, crude oil, World Cup 2022 venues, and, unfortunately, sometimes, information.

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