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Cowboys Ditching Playbooks for iPads?

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A number of NFL teams, including your Dallas Cowboys, are reportedly thinking of ditching traditional, paper and ink playbooks for digital tablets, such as the Apple iPad.

    In an article on CNET.com, Dallas Cowboys’ head of technology Pete Walsh says that “America’s Team” is at least one of “a couple” NFL clubs considering the switch, and that the team is currently mulling over the pros and cons of such a move, the timeframe for which, Walsh says, is not known. From CNET.com:

    On the up side, there's the potential savings of paper. For another, Walsh indicated, there's the feeling that if a tablet could be remotely wiped, it means that a lost iPad wouldn't necessarily result in all the plays for the next Sunday's game potentially falling into enemy hands.

    Of course, there would be obstacles in the way of a shift from traditional playbooks to iPads, not the least of which would be the traditionalist nature of many football types:
     

    ... Walsh said that one delay in the implementation of the shift is that the iPad isn't seen in the NFL's technology circles as being secure enough yet. That's why tablets, such as the Samsung Galaxy Tab, or others running the Android operating system could end up being selected if teams, or the NFL, decide they're more secure.

     

    The security issue notwithstanding, Walsh certainly sees an upside to using the iPad, or another tablet both as a playbook, as well as a means of displaying the overhead photos used by teams to deconstruct plays during a game--this is the sort of thing the iPad was meant for, after all. But he says that he, and others in his position will weigh the decision seriously before anything is done.

    "I've got that responsibility to the Jones family," Walsh said, "to make sure those [football] assets don't get out there."