Among the most notable assertions in Wednesday’s Wells Report on alleged football under-inflation by the Patriots was that investigators believe it was “more probable than not” that New England quarterback Tom Brady was “at least generally aware” that two Patriots gameday employees were letting air out of footballs.
Writing in the report, the investigative team points to the “material increase in the frequency of telephone and text communications” between Brady and a Patriots staffer alleged to have manipulated footballs as “evidence of Brady‟s awareness” of efforts to under-inflate footballs.
Those communications, the report alleges, picked up beginning on Monday, January 19, when the deflation allegations came to light.
According to the Wells Report, Brady and Patriots equipment assistant John Jastremski communicated via telephone at least six times before Jastremski turned in his telephone to the Patriots to be imaged forensically on January 21.
Overall, Brady and Jastremski had two conversations apiece occurring on January 20 and 21 and “at least” two conversations on January 19, investigators assert. Brady and Jastremski spoke for nearly an hour in total over the three days, the Wells Report found.
Moreover, investigators allege they found Brady sent text messages to Jastremski “seemingly designed to calm” the equipment assistant.
“You good Jonny boy?” read one of the texts allegedly sent by Brady to Jastremski.
Wrote Jastremski in one of his text messages to Brady, as found by the report: “Still nervous; so far so good though.”
According to the Wells Report, Jastremski and Brady had not texted or communicated over the phone for more than six months prior to January 19.
Brady is also alleged to have invited Jastremski to the Patriots’ quarterbacks room on January 19 — something that had never occurred previously, Jastremski was alleged to have told investigators.
After the inflation allegations against the Patriots surfaced after their win in the AFC title game on January 18, Brady told Boston radio station WEEI that it was “ridiculous” to believe New England was improperly altering footballs.