Bill Belichick exonerated of wrongdoing on Deflategate

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Patriots coach Bill Belichick had no role in the Patriots under-inflating the footballs they used in the AFC Championship Game.

That’s the word from the NFL, which said in its statement announcing the four-game suspension of Tom Brady that Belichick did nothing wrong. According to the league, Brady and Patriots employees John Jastremski and James McNally were the only ones found to break any rules.

“In accepting the findings of the report, we note that the report identified no evidence of wrongdoing or knowledge of wrongdoing on the part of any member of the coaching staff, including Head Coach Bill Belichick, or by any Patriots’ staff member other than Mr. Jastremski and Mr. McNally, including head equipment manager Dave Schoenfeld. Similarly, the Wells report is clear that Patriots ownership and executives did not participate in any way in the misconduct, or have knowledge of the misconduct,” the NFL’s statement said.

Belichick’s reputation took a huge hit in 2007, when it was revealed that his staff was taping opposing teams’ signals in violation of NFL rules. But while Belichick was cast as the villain in Spygate, he’s been exonerated in Deflategate.

94 responses to “Bill Belichick exonerated of wrongdoing on Deflategate

  1. His name isn’t Sean Payton…of course he was exonerated. Goodell Quote: ‘Sean Payton is the head coach, ignorance is no excuse’. Wow is really the only term that comes to mind right now. Belichek’s ship…happened on his watch…he’s the head coach…just not of the New Orleans Saints.

  2. More favoritism for the Patriots. Peyton gets a year because “ignorance is no excuse.” Belichick gets nothing.

  3. GOODELL MUST GO, and I am actually ashamed that Robert Kraft help him get the job. Now the NFL will be in court and this will tarnish this LEAGUE not TEAM forever!

  4. Called it far and wide as soon as Goodell, who’s dug his claws in deep to his power to punish in every other instance of conduct detrimental to the league, merrily handed it off to Troy Vincent for buddy Bob’s coach. Ignorance is just A-OK as an excuse for Bill Belichick.

  5. To be fair, the report didn’t find wrong doing from anyone. It ignored evidence it didn’t like while taking other evidence out of context to for their narritive.

    The biggest piece of evidence they have implicates NFL officials illegally over inflating footballs.

  6. If anyone honestly believes megalomaniac control freak Bill Belichick was entirely unaware this went on under his own nose, I have a bridge to sell you.

  7. Haha, I am a Patriots fan but how can the league say “ignorance is not an excuse” with Sean Payton and then exonerate Bill on this issue?

    I mean the league is just making up the rules as they go.

    The Wells report is a joke.

    The punishment is a joke.

    The NFL is a joke.

    Roger Goodell is a clown.

  8. Mr Kraft and Tommy I can’t wait for the lawsuit! Fuhrer Goodell will tremble and drop suspension to 2 games and suit will be dropped

  9. Why did Sean Payton get suspended for a year- OH OH I KNOW- his owner does not invite Rodger Godell to his house for dinner and bribe him- This blows

  10. This whole organization gets a pass for some reason because they have a pretty boy QB(with the tuck rule named after him)..a high profile/highly obnoxious owner,and the beauty they have as a coach.A cheater is a cheater..period.A-Rod gets a season the Pats get 4 games..B.S

  11. Considering the very depth of Belichick’s pathological need to control absolutely everything with regards to the Patriots right down to the littlest minutia, is there any right thinking person who actually believes Belichick had no knowledge of what was going on? Really? When the employee in question nicknames himself, “The Deflator,” it obviously means that this practice had been going on for who knows how long? And Belichick wasn’t aware of this going on for however long it went on? Really? Could it be that Brady refused to hand over his cell phone because there was more evidence on there to implicate others on the team, namely Belichick? So what then? Brady falls on the sword to protect his coach? In my opinion, I fully believe it.

  12. Saints got screwed.

    Belichick knew.

    Check the fumbling numbers.

    “We’re on to the next cheating scam.”

  13. To all Pats haters:

    Jealousy is NOT evidence. Just because your team sucks, can’t draft a lick, or run the ball at the 1-yard line does NOT make this into a witch-hunt.

  14. He “won’t hear about this till Monday” His default answer for every gaff he ever got into.

  15. It’s strange that so many football fans misunderstand “more probable than not”.

    “More probable than not” means more than 50% likely.

    It is the standard used for most all civil trials in the US. If someone gets fired from a job, if someone’s car is in an accident, if someone has a dispute with the company painting his house, then those disputes would go to civil courts, not criminal courts. Those disputes would also follow the same “preponderance of the evidence” or more than 50% likely standard that the Wells Report was based on.

    People can disagree with the Wells Report’s evaluation of the evidence, but the standard was the same standard that would have been used in a civil court. Employee terminations and other business disputes are civil matters, not criminal matters. “Proved beyond a reasonable doubt” is not the standard used in civil disputes. I think a lot of people on this website don’t understand this point.

    NFL suspensions of players and fines administered to teams are civil law and civil court matters, not criminal law and criminal court matters.

  16. For those of you NOLA clowns…You’re smokin crack if you think Payton didn’t know what his D Coordinator was doing. He directly lied to the commissioner. It’s that simple. Let it go NOLA. Belichick doesn’t work day in and day out with McNally/Jastremski. And don’t give me your “he knows every little thing that goes on” crap.

  17. Yeah, sure he had no idea that his team never fumbled the football due to deflated footballs.

    No idea at all, move along folks, we’re on to the next cheating tactic.

  18. I know Drew Brees demands an explanation. Sean Payton, also.
    Brady needs to give up that electronic evidence on appeal. Probably can’t remember his password.
    I think the Pats got off light. What’s a million bucks to Kraft. I’m sure he’ll figure out a way to get the taxpayers to shoulder that debt. And a FOURTH round pick in 2017?
    Big fail Roger. Big fail.

  19. Belichick has fostered a culture of cheating in the Patriots organization. Maybe he had something to do with this, maybe he didn’t. But everyone there knows that Belichick is OK with cheating.

  20. Payton was responsible for his coaching staff who were running the bounties. BB does not supervise the equipment minions, the club does. Hence, the million dollar fine and loss of draft picks for the club.

  21. nathansworldorder says:
    May 11, 2015 6:15 PM

    I thought ignorance was not an excuse??
    Exactly! Sean Peyton was suspended a year for being the HC for Bountygate. There was no proof of any wrong doing by him. Why is it different for Bellyfat….er….I mean Bellicheck.

  22. For once I agree with Pats homers: This certainly IS a DOUBLE STANDARD!!

    If ignorance by the HC is no excuse for Payton in the Saints bounty scandal, why is BB’s ignorance an excuse for him not getting docked a few games?

    Sean Payton should sue.

    And I’d love Brady to sue, since he’ll then have to open up that cell phone and email system to “prove” his innocence.

  23. Joe Philbin is a happy man.

    In his words, “I’m not the only HC who doesn’t know what the heck is going on.”

  24. pats777 says:
    May 11, 2015 6:33 PM

    Payton was responsible for his coaching staff who were running the bounties. BB does not supervise the equipment minions, the club does. Hence, the million dollar fine and loss of draft picks for the club.
    Forgive me if I’m missing something but isn’t BB responsible for Tom Brady?????

    If Brady is disciplined then so should BB.

  25. There’s a huge difference between a system that your defensive coordinator put in place that involved each and every defensive player to try and hurt other players, and possibly end their careers, and what Brady “more probably than not, generally was aware of” with deflating footballs. Head coaches should know what their right-hand man is doing, I don’t think they are likely to know what an officials locker room attendant is up to. Stop comparing the two.

  26. You know Belichick is going to use all of his coaching skill to try and go 4-0 with Garofalo. Great challenge for him–I bet he goes 4-0.

  27. One For The Thumb says:

    To be fair, the report didn’t find wrong doing from anyone.

    The Deflator agrees haha

  28. Tom Brady gets four games, Belichick gets nothing and Patriots organization (Kraft) gets a $1 million suspension, which is way too light. Giving Brady credit for the win in the ’08 opener, Pats won 10 more games without him that season so a four-game suspension is nothing.

    Penalties way too light even when you add the loss of draft picks. The organizational fine should have been 10 times more, Brady should have gotten eight games (see Jonathan Vilma) and Belichick should have been suspended a year (see Sean Payton, who was told ignorance is no excuse in Saints bounty case) for failing to promote atmosphere of compliance.

    But I’m not surprised. Goodell knew that any harsher suspensions and Kraft would have his job. That might still happen. Spineless doofus.

  29. djdvd says:
    May 11, 2015 6:15 PM
    Sean Payton must be loving this. Or hating? Yeah, probably hating.

    I can’t be the only one who has noticed they are going back to being the ‘Aint’s again, am I?

  30. Just because Bellacheat is given a break doesn’t mean that he wasn’t part of it.
    I bet he was.

  31. If I’m Kraft, I fire Belichick and trade Brady. Even if they win the next two SBowls, it won’t mean a thing.

  32. For all you brain surgeons claiming the league proved there case by a preponderance of the evidence, you couldn’t be more wrong. The issued a biased report that is made to show it that way. It is not the same as a civil case, because they are not allowed to provide a defense against the so called “investigation”. In the real world the accused party would mount a defense to dispel some of the findings. I think in this case it would be very easy to switch the findings from more likely to less likely. How would you like to be sued and your accuser gets to present all their facts as they see fit without you being able to question how they came up with their so called facts.

    This was a frame job from the beginning. For those that say ” Why would the league want to tarnish one of their star players”, it is easy to explain. If they got caught in the failed sting, with all the leaks and questions about the NFL office, it would be the downfall of Goodell and most of his friends there. Nice jobslike that are hard to come by. That is why you pay $5 mil to get the result you want.

  33. Patriots fumbling data:

    2000-06 one fumbel every 42 touches
    2007-14 one fumble every 74 touches

    they’ve been cheating for years.
    Still not good statistical work no matter how many times you post it.

  34. 2 cheating scandals while Belichek is coach.
    2 large penalties levied against the team.

    Coach “Sgt. Shultz” Belichek – “I know nothing!”

    How stupid is the league office to believe him?

  35. Belichick was unnecessarily exonerated by Wells. He bears the same blame carried by the Saints and Falcons coaches and front office personnel.

    Those saying Brady cooperated, should know that not turning over his phone is analogous to a suspected player rejecting a drug urinalysis. He is presumed guilty.

    Refusal to take a drug test brings discipline and so should Brady’s refusal. When you consider this in its totality, the Pats were handled with kid gloves.

  36. I could see Belichik stepping down for a year than finishing his career where it started after Coughlin retires.

  37. deweygroup says:
    May 11, 2015 7:04 PM

    For all you brain surgeons claiming the league proved there case by a preponderance of the evidence, you couldn’t be more wrong……
    I’m no brain surgeon but I’m pretty sure Tom Brady did refuse to give up his cell phone which IS considered conduct detrimental to the league for not cooperative in an investigation.

    Being that I’m not a brain surgeon maybe I’m wrong but if league executives were compliant with giving up their phones during the Ray Rice investigation I question why Brady wouldn’t give his up. Again, I’m no brain surgeon but if I were wanting to prove my innocence, I would give up my cell phone to do so unless of course, there’s something to hide. But I guess if I were a brain surgeon I would know better and not give it up.

  38. The loss of picks proves this was all about sticking it to Bill from the start. Everyone else was collateral damage.

  39. Everyone knows Bill runs the show and he knows all going on. He escaped punishment but every player and every fan knows he knew more about this than shown

  40. Correction Brady “probably” has involvement. Would love to see that word hold up in court of law. NFL continues to be a joke

  41. If this league is trying to stop the Patriots their mistake was wounding Brady and sparing Belichick. WINTER IS COMING.

  42. Honestly this punishment seems about right.

    Whoever advised Brady on how to handle this couldn’t have done a worse job; he looked like he was hiding something from day 1. Could have been easily avoided too.

    If I’m Kraft I either clean house and trade Brady, or I sell the team.

  43. Brady will be exhonerated next…
    Will really enjoy the tears then!!!

  44. Friends of mine who are friends of the Hawks and Broncos think this is a crazy excessive punishment. As a Patriot fan, I know I am bias but there astonishment just further proves this is bananas.

    Fight it Tommy!

  45. Wise up Patriot apologists! Brady’s suspension is for being a cheater AND failing to cooperate in the investigation.
    Just like bountygate.

  46. Will the NFL suspend Bill Belichick the next time the Patriots are caught cheating?

  47. He is still the one who instills the culture of cheating in his players.
    Saw him once on one of those Hard Knocks-type segments where he encouraged holding on goal line stands, explaining to his defense “..half the distance, that’s the cheapest penalty you’ll ever get…”

  48. At least the NFL released the entire Wells report to the media and public. Saints fans are still waiting for ANY of the 50,000 pages of evidence of the bountygate that the NFL claimed to have possessed to be released.

  49. This whole deflate-gate stuff is ridiculous…..


    My Saints were without their leader for an ENTIRE SEASON!


    Fraudger Goodell needs to answer why Belichecks punishment is not equal to Paytons.

    I agree with the lawsuit comment. If I’m SP, I’d sue the pants off the NFL.

    People forget SP lost MILLIONS of dollars due to this punishment.

    You suck commish. You suck bad.

  50. Once again Krafty has another cheater exposed on the team. First Belichik and now Brady. What does Krafty do? Stands behind them! A culture of ill repute that starts at the very top. Nobody will look at this team any different until these 3 “you ain’t competin’ if you ain’t cheatin’ are out of the league.

  51. Pats fans say nothing goes on in that organization without Bill’s knowledge when it comes to all football matters. Now I hear since Bill had no knowledge he shouldn’t be suspended.

    So which is it? He either controls, and knows everything, or he doesn’t control, and know everything, that Pat’s fans says he does.

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