I'm sure it was discussed in some circles before the NYT published - the question is into the nature of investigations before the NYT publisehd. I just assumed we were speculating on the timing of initiation of the "formal" DoJ investigation; and that would come from an NSA request, since it is NSA activity that was compromised.
Media leaks are not the only ones covered in the above-linked document, and there is a duty to report any known leaks.
E4. ENCLOSURE 4
DOJ MEDIA LEAK QUESTIONNAIRE
E4.1.1. If the media discloses classified information without proper authorization, the Heads of the DoD Components shall submit the DOJ Media Leak Questionnaire through security channels to the USD(I). In coordination with the DoD GC, the USD(I) shall prepare a letter addressed to the attention of Chief, Internal Security Section, Criminal Division, Bond Building, Room 9400, U.S. Department of Justice, 1400 New York Avenue, Northwest, Washington, D.C. 20530.
E4.1.2. There are eleven standard questions relating to unauthorized disclosures of classified information to the media that the Heads of the DoD Components must promptly answer to the fullest extent possible:
E220.127.116.11. What is the date and identity of the article containing classified information?http://www.fas.org/irp/doddir/dod/d5210_50.pdf
E18.104.22.168. What specific statements in the article are classified and was the information properly classified?
E22.214.171.124. Is the classified information disclosed accurate?
E126.96.36.199. Did the information come from a specific document, and if so, what is the origin of the document and the name of the individual responsible for the security of the classified data discussed?
E188.8.131.52. What is the extent of official circulation of the information?
E184.108.40.206. Has the information been the subject of prior official release?
E220.127.116.11. Was prior clearance for publication or release of the information sought from proper authorities?
E18.104.22.168. Has the material, parts thereof or enough background data, been published officially or in the press to make an educated speculation on the matter possible?
E22.214.171.124. Will the information be made available for use in a prosecution, and if so, what is the name of the person competent to testify on its classification?
E126.96.36.199. Has declassification been considered or decided on before publishing the data?
E188.8.131.52. What effect the disclosure of the classified data might have on the national defense?