David Meadows comments usefully on a Jerusalem Post article on The Passion and specifically its over-played It-was-only-the-sadistic-Pilate-who-was to-blame line:
Chatter: Passion Protest
Meadows draws attention to the passage about Jesus in Josephus' Antiquities 18 and the line "at the suggestion of the principal men amongst us . . ." One might add that many leading Historical Jesus scholars avoid the it-was-all-Pilate line including E. P. Sanders, who confesses his admiration for and understanding of Caiaphas alongside the claim that it is highly likely that the High Priest indeed played a key role in the execution of Jesus.