Joint NFL-NFLPA request could set stage for settlement

On Thursday, Judge Richard M. Berman made like the Honorable Moses Harry Horowitz (a/k/a Moe Howard) and clunked together the heads of the NFL and NFLPA, directing them to: (1) quit talking publicly about the #DeflateGate case; and (2) start talking to each other privately about resolving it.

The next day, instead of submitting a motion requesting a ruling by September 4 or, alternatively, an injunction allowing Brady to play until the case is resolved, NFLPA lawyer Jeffrey Kessler submitted a letter informing Judge Berman that the two sides have been talking, and that they’ve agreed on a proposed schedule for resolving the case.

They’ve agreed that the case can be concluded without depositions or document requests or testimony or the formal introduction of evidence in court. They’ve also agreed it can be resolved quickly, with the NFL and NFLPA submitting initial documents supporting their respective positions by August 7 and the parties then responding to each other’s initial submissions seven days later.

The focus then would shift to the oral argument before Judge Berman, because that would be the day on which — before, during, or after the hearing ends — he likely would call the lawyers and a key representative from each party (perhaps Roger Goodell and Tom Brady) into his chambers for the purposes of twisting arms (or gouging eyes) in an effort to settle the case.

I’ve said all along that a four-game fine, with no acknowledgment of wrongdoing from Brady, would make the most sense. Although the NFL may strenuously object to that outcome, the league could feel differently if/when Judge Berman says, “You can take no suspension and a four-game fine, or you’ll get no suspension and no fine. It’s up to you.”

145 responses to “Joint NFL-NFLPA request could set stage for settlement

  1. Anything but a full pardon and you can assume the Pats knew/did something to their balls.

    Brady’s legacy will be forever tarnished without a full pardon.

  2. He doesn’t deserve any games but one game is what it should be if a suspension is a must. It really should be zero but to make it 4 games just because the colts and people that work close to Goodell are jealous of Brady isn’t right.

  3. I’m done with the NFL is Brady 4 suspension is not upheld.

    He gets every call now he can cheat as well and get away with it. I’ll watch WWF. Its more real.

  4. Let’s be honest to a guy like Brady a four game fine means next to nothing to him and playing means everything.

    We’ve seen players on their rookie deal appeal their suspension and be happy when their suspension was overturned to a fine which was larger then their game cheque.

    If the NFL settles and it does not involve a suspension then it will be clear that the Patriots aren’t the only ones with deflated balls.

  5. McNally and Jastremski already extensively testified. Go read the NFLPA brief. Hint: yet again, total denial of any ball tampering.

  6. What a whitewash! Goodell gets to look tough by upholding Brady’s suspension, then – abracadabra – a settlement is announced reversing the penalties. I wouldn’t be surprised if the team penalties are reversed as well. Kraft gets what he wants. Brady gets what he wants. Goodell gets what he really wants, but can’t admit.

    The Great Belichick Asterisk Era continues.

    Nothing to see here, just move along.

  7. It doesn’t matter what they do, except in new England Brady will now be forever labeled a CHEATER!

  8. Reports are now out there that Mike Kensil leaked the now infamous report to ESPN two days after the AFC championship game which falsely stated that 11/12 Patriot footballs were at least 2 PSI under regulation and that ALL of the Colts balls were tested and at regulation. This report sealed the public narrative that the Patriots cheated.

    Mike Kensil is the same guy who was yelling at Patriots equipment personal at half time. Mike Kensil is a former NY Jets employee. He was personally involved in Bill Belichick’s spurning of the Jets to join the New England Patriots. Mike Kensil has a well documented distaste for Bill Belichick and the Patriots.

    NEVER in the history of the NFL has a player been suspended for not cooperating in an NFL investigation. NEVER in the history of the NFL has a player been suspended for an equipment violation.

    These are facts not opinions. How much longer can the national media and the fans of the NFL (outside of New England) ignore them?

  9. ……….or the judge could pimp slap Tom Bundchen and say you were lucky the NFL only gave you four games.

  10. Or Brady can take a reduced suspension, a fine, and take his medicine. Brady has no leverage. At all.

    And of course, like the NFLPA’s previous settlement offers……this one comes with a stipulation to keep it all sealed. Funny how somebody with nothing to hide keeps wanting everything sealed from the public. Innocent people don’t have anything to hide. Funny how the two Patriots employees are still “indefinitely suspended without pay”, despite the organization’s strong insistence that there was no wrongdoing. Funny how all attempts by the media to get answers about those two employees’ status have been met with crickets by the Patriots. Funny how a team from Massachusetts with supposedly such a so-called strong legal case has to go forum shopping in Minnesota to try and find a favorable venue.

  11. I hope that you will post the newly released emails from the Patriots and Jeff Pash.
    It is unreal to see the degree of hate and malice within Pash.

  12. So what’s the fine for then?
    ===
    Same thing Favre got fined for: telling the NFL to beat it when they asked for his phone.

  13. Brady isn’t getting off without serving at least a 2 game suspension. Bookmark this Florio.

  14. After reading the NFLPA 54 page paper on this, I really doubt they could just give Brady a 4 game fine and have it stick. I have a feeling the total fine will be anywhere from 5 to 25k, and that will close the books on this… except for going out and winning his fifth Superbowl!

  15. NO SUSPENSIONS & $25k per football that did not comply with Science ( none were found to be under 12.5psi according to SCIENTIFIC FACT) and $50k for so-called refusal to cooperate.

    Take it or we sue, signed TB.

  16. In 2009 a NY Jets employee was caught tampering with kicking footballs. The Jets were fined. That is all. There was never an investigation into if a Jets kicker told the employee to alter the footballs even though the kicker would obviously benefit most from the action. Under the CBA NFL players are not subject to punishment for these type of infractions. The 2009 Jets case is precedent for this.

    This is why Roger Goodell is comparing deflated footballs to PED’s because he knows the history of these type of offenses.

  17. Good thing every commentator is an espn reading, Goodell loving half-wit. This isn’t even an investigation if another team is involved, see Jets 2009 with illegal kicking balls and Carolina 2015 using heaters on the sidelines. Every ball played with in a cold weather city from November to January is illegal by league PSI levels.

  18. I could see a $100k fine (escalated from Favre’s $50k fine for not turning over his phone) but that’s it.

    There’s a reason why the NFL’s appeal hearing was a joke…..they were protecting themselves, not the initial discipline ruling.

  19. MF, “You can take no suspension and a four-game fine, or you’ll get no suspension and no fine. It’s up to you.”

    What are the chances that happens?

  20. I am really having a hard time understanding how fans from other teams are so convinced that Brady cheated. Read the science in the Wells report, not the spin.

    The biggest question around this whole thing is why did Wells switch the guages?

    The details of this decision have never been detailed. And it is the crux that makes it “seem” that air was taken out of the balls.

  21. Here is where we are – opinions aside.

    The Wells Report has been widely criticized as being unreliable. Alone – it does a poor job convincing most people of the NFLs assertion that balls were purposely deflated.

    Wells requested and received cell phones from 5 Patriot employees including ball boys and Belechick.

    Wells told Brady he didn’t need his cell to validate his report findings BEFORE Brady destroyed it.

    A player (union member) providing a cell phone to the NFL would set a prescient – the NFLPAs doesnt see that as being in the best interest of its members (players)

    Brady offered and provided all text data (phone numbers, dates, timestamps) to Wells. Wells could use that data to verify the text history (with Brady) on the 5 confiscated phones had not been deleted.

    The punishment was originally for the deflating the balls but was up-held on appeal for destroying the phone.

    The court case will be based on procedure not content. That means IF the court decides Goodell was wrong when he changed the reason of the punishment to ‘destroying a cell phone’ – the NFLPA wins.

    In the end – the outcome doesn’t really prove if there was cheating or not. They wont be arguing the finer points of the Wells report. Its about the CBA.

    And – the relationship between Goodell (management) and NFLPA (union) continues to deteriorate….(see Rice/Peterson/Hardy/Saints…)

    Thats bad for business……cant imagine the owners will put up with that for too much longer….

  22. Bottom line, Brady must miss games. That’s the only way to truly punish him. Also, Brady has to come clean about his role in telling “The Deflator” to take air out his footballs, or no reduction in suspension.

  23. NFL’s case agaist Brady:

    1.Bottom rung, low level employee calls himself ‘the Deflator’ in May. Without mentioning FBs.

    2. Same employee stops at the bathroom
    on his way out to the field. As many posters to this site well know, many things can happen in a bathroom. Including going to the bathroom.

    3. Junk science that’s been blown up by too many sources to be credible.

    4. Brady destroyed the phone they didn’t ask for, then provided the info they did ask for. But, after 5 mil and 6 months, the NFL thought it was too tough to track it all down.

    That’s their case for 1 mil, a 1rst and 4th rnd pk, and a 4 gm suspension for the best player in the league and great embassador of the gm.

  24. Why would the NFL negotiate after the circus Brady and Kraft just put on? I wouldn’t based on pure principle. I can’t respect someone who conducts their business through the media. Also, I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop, you know the NFL has some dirt on the Pats.

  25. solo681 says:
    Jul 31, 2015 3:35 PM

    NO SUSPENSIONS & $25k per football that did not comply with Science ( none were found to be under 12.5psi according to SCIENTIFIC FACT) and $50k for so-called refusal to cooperate.

    Take it or we sue, signed TB.

    ——

    Um, they ARE suing, lol.

    2 games and a public admission of guilt is the best he’s gonna get.

  26. Florio, you’re the best. Linking pro football and the Stooges is perfect. Well done.

  27. For all the talk that the acceptance of any punishment by Brady is admission of guilt, let’s look at it the other way. If the NFL settles after introducing the “Brady destroyed his phone” narrative then they know they can’t win in court.

    The Pats may have done something at some point, but in a case where Goodell & Company screamed about “integrity” for months, how ironic is it that they initiated a process and subsequent investigation that seems completely devoid of any.

  28. This whole thing is total microcosm of America .. Something happens …. Fake news outlets report what they are told without doing a shred of journalism to find the out the truth before reporting it…. 40% of the country believes it because it fits with their preconceived notions. Fact-based evidence comes out refuting the earlier assertions… yet that same 40% STILL goes on believing the wrong information…

    In an era when so many are so dumb, the media has a greater responsibility to report only the facts that are true …… yet the media has done nothing of the sort. In fact, most major outlets have shrunk budgets for investigative wings while pumping more money into the gossip style reporting…

    When PFT does a better job than the big budget ESPN at explaining the facts as they are we have a problem..

  29. Then let’s see some testimony. Oh that’s right, it was sealed. Sorry, I’m not taking the NFLPA’s word for it. Just like the NFL was right not to take the Brady camp’s vetted spreadsheet full of “unprecedented electronic data” seriously.

  30. Just shows that this case will turn on legal issues and not the underlying facts of who let the air out of the balls… For example, does the Commish have the power to suspend Brady under the collective bargaining agreement? Did the League follow the process/procedure allowable under the collective bargaining agreement? Did the process comport with procedural due process for Brady? Was the ruling an abuse of discretion granted the Commish?

  31. bigbits2 says:
    Jul 31, 2015 3:34 PM

    I hope that you will post the newly released emails from the Patriots and Jeff Pash.
    It is unreal to see the degree of hate and malice within Pash
    ——

    where would we find these, please?

  32. Thanks, Florio. for the Stooges reference. You must have been watching the same reruns of the boys on Paul Shannon’s Adventure Time out of Channel 4 in Pittsburgh……and thus you’re scarred like all of us.

    Clearly, the Pats are represented by another classic Stooge episode that featured the law firm of DEWEY, CHEATUM & HOWE.

  33. Here’s where it gets messy. The NFLPA and Brady have conflicting interests. Brady needs full vindication to restore his legacy and the NFLPA needs a resolution that protects other members.

    If the NFL offers a Favre-like $25,000 fine for an equipment violation, it will get real interesting when the NFLPA wants to jump all over that offer and Brady wants to reject it because the words “Brady” and “equipment violation” can’t be in the same sentence as far as Brady’s personal interest is concerned.

    By the way, if the NFL was smart, this is the offer they’d make to drive a wedge between the NFLPA and Brady.

  34. Please uphold the 4 game ban. It’s appropriate and if nothing else Kraft and Brady’s conduct is detrimental to the league!

  35. People just don’t get it. Tampering with footballs by team employees falls under the “competitive integrity” policy. Under the current CBA NFL players are not subject to punishments under the “competitive integrity” policy. Only NFL teams can be punished for these violations. Not only that but there is a ruling by Roger Goodell from 2009 that sets precedent for this.

    NEVER in the history of the NFL has a player been suspended for being “generally aware” of anything.

    NEVER in the history of the NFL has a player been suspended for noncooperation in an NFL investigation.

    NEVER! There is no precedent for this type of punishment. This is why Roger Goodell compared Tom Brady being generally aware of deflated footballs to PED use. So if, and when, it goes to court he has something to argue. Because the NFL can’t suspended players for being generally aware of team employees deflating footballs. And because the NFL can’t suspend players for not cooperating in an NFL investigation. Goodell has to say that deflating footballs is a competitive advantage on par with PED use. Haha, I would hope that all reasonable NFL fans can see through this crap. Especially since we really have no idea if the footballs were even deflated.

  36. Brady’s legacy will be forever tarnished without a full pardon.

    Maybe Obama will pardon you. Got the cash?

  37. I think it is clear the NFL made the NFLPA and Tom Brady blink if they’re coming to the table with “reduced suspension if you seal the record, please” again.

    Game over.

  38. Once again Goodell is shown as the dufus that he is. An inept oaf at best, its obvious the NFL is a gold mine that almost anyone with a high school education could have brought the $$$ in on those TV contracts. Its been proven he can’t think on his feet, is a slow dullard and it goes to show you that if you have Jerry Jones approval, well, enough said.

  39. northeastkiller says:
    Jul 31, 2015 3:56 PM

    Why does the NFLPA only want to settle if the record is sealed if Brady didn’t do anything?++++++++++++++++++++++++

    That is to give Goodell and easy way out of the mess he created in exchange for the removal of ALL suspensions.

    It is called Give n Take

  40. “I am having a hard time understanding how fans of other teams are so convinced that Brady cheated”

    Easy, they want it to be true. Jealousy brings hatred. Most people have gotten their information of this website, ESPN. Most never read the Wells Report and other actual information. Look at all the comments about Brady “destroying” his phone, the same phone most people can’t get thru their head that he was never to going to turn it over. He has said he would not set a precedent for other players in the union.These are the same people that believe that Spygate was about the Patriots videotaping signals.

    The biggest problem is that if Brady serves no games several posters on this site have threatened to be done with the NFL. How will the league survive?

    Free Brady
    No Brady/No Banner

  41. if/when Judge Berman says, “You can take no suspension and a four-game fine, or you’ll get no suspension and no fine. It’s up to you.”

    Is this how our justice system works?

  42. Brady is out of his mind if he doesn’t take this to court….

    Look at all the crap coming out about this.

    This crap will never hold up in a court of law.

    This is what this league is built on.

    The teams make this league. The league offices are

    just chimps in suits like the CareerBuilder.com ads

  43. Crybaby Tom will still cry if the judge tells him to sit for any amount of time.

  44. This story is a prime example of what has happened to
    journalism in this country. The internet has sped up the
    news process. Its “get the story ASAP before someone else
    does”. And its obvious that tact comes with a price.

    How many times is the NFL gonna screw up and people
    are gonna print stuff only for the tide to turn on it when
    all the information comes in and the story looks entirely
    different…

    What a mess.

  45. I’m sorry, but I’m still laughing. “Oh, the PA is insisting on that as part of THEIR settlement offer just to HELP the NFL!” Settlements are agreements where both sides get what THEY want, not where one party “helps” the other.

    This is what delusion based on what shirt a guy wears on Sundays looks like, people.

  46. Just look at it objectively. Pretend for one minute that’s it’s not the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots and Super Bowl MVP Tom Brady.

    As a fan of the NFL are you OK with Roger Goodell comparing the competive advantage of .5-1.5 PSI in footballs to steroids? Are you OK with Roger Goodell taking two draft picks and 1 million dollars from an NFL team even though the invesigation, paid for by the league, cleared said team of any wrong doing? And are you OK with Goodell suspending an NFL player 4 games for being generally aware of anything? Or for not cooperating in a league investigation?

    I don’t know how any NFL fan or U.S. Citizen could be OK with any of this.

  47. The NFLPA says that ….
    “They’ve agreed that the case can be concluded without depositions or document requests or testimony or the formal introduction of evidence in court.”

    I bet. The NFLPA doesn’t want anything to do with a real trial

  48. Once Pash and Kensil give up their phones in light of todays information about how deep the corruption in the league office goes, then its time to start assessing penalties to the proper parties.

  49. Gotta wonder if any deal includes Brady agreeing not to bring a defamation suit against the NFL

    Between the purposefully false “11 of 12 2lbs under” that ESPN has yet to correct to the latest “Brady destroyed his cellphone” (as Opposed to “Brady got a new cellphone when the NFL told him he didn’t need to turn over his personal cellphone – just like Goodell refused to during the Ray Rice Report”)

    Brady will have a pretty strong case to make on how Goodell and ESPN among others have impacted his career

  50. So Brady ‘s gonna wine like a five year old until the parents (NFL) can’t take it anymore and just give in.

    Brady take your punishment like a man for once in your life and stop blaming others for your mistakes .

  51. “In light of today’s information” that CLEARLY comes from a radio host with an ax to grind that’s sourced to nobody, not that the Pats fans who have screamed about unsourced reporting and needing proof care at all.

  52. yankeemofo says:Jul 31, 2015 3:25 PM

    Anything but a full pardon and you can assume the Pats knew/did something to their balls.

    Brady’s legacy will be forever tarnished without a full pardon.

    ——————–

    That is incorrect and incoherent.

  53. whitetrash69 says:
    Jul 31, 2015 3:47 PM
    Why would the NFL negotiate after the circus Brady and Kraft just put on? I wouldn’t based on pure principle. I can’t respect someone who conducts their business through the media. Also, I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop, you know the NFL has some dirt on the Pats.

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Really? You can’t respect someone that conducts their business through the media, which is EXACTLY what the NFL has done!

    The other shoe to drop is that the NFL broke labor law and Mike Kensil gets fired. Big size 12 shoe dropping!

  54. northeastkiller says:
    Jul 31, 2015 4:18 PM

    The NFL is perfectly willing to let us see the record of the court case if it proceeds or they settle. The NFLPA isn’t. Why?

    I think you’ve got that backwards. The NFL won’t even let Brady’s lawyers see the notes from the investigation.

  55. There will be no settlement unless Brady makes a full admission of guilt. And we all know that he will never do that. The NFL holds all the cards. Brady has conceded the balls were tampered with. That is why he is not attempting to challenge the science because it failed miserably in his appeal hearing.

  56. Why should Brady agree to settle? It’s not like he can come out looking worse. The majority of people already think he’s guilty, thanks to the NFL and their selective and well-timed leaks.

    I say he fights it tooth and nail and takes the whole dysfunctional clown show down with him. He shouldn’t stop until Mike Kensil is cleaning windshields at an intersection in rush hour traffic.

  57. “In light of today’s information” that CLEARLY comes from a radio host with an ax to grind that’s sourced to nobody, not that the Pats fans who have screamed about unsourced reporting and needing proof care at all.”

    Take out the Kensil information if you want.

    Still doesn’t change the fact that .5-1.5 PSI =\ steroids/PED’s, that no NFL player has ever been suspended for being generally aware of anything, that no NFL player has ever been suspended for not cooperating in an NFL investigation, and that per the CBA and past precedent set forth by Roger Goodell tampering with footballs by team employees falls under the “competitive integrity” policy; a policy which applies to NFL teams only.

  58. If the judge says a fine and no suspension or no suspension and no fine why in the world would Brady accept the settlement after this? You really need to read what you write before publishing it.

  59. “northeastkiller says:
    Jul 31, 2015 3:56 PM

    Why does the NFLPA only want to settle if the record is sealed if Brady didn’t do anything?”

    The NFLPA said nothing about the record being sealed.

    They said “They’ve agreed that the case can be concluded without depositions or document requests or testimony or the formal introduction of evidence in court. ”

    This means that both sides are willing to waive many of the procedures for bringing in new evidence and/or witnesses in order to expedite the proceedings. This has absolutely nothing to do with having the court record sealed.

    Seriously, did you ever learn how to parse? I’m baffled at how you read the post above and come out with “The NFLPA wants the court record sealed.”

  60. This is gonna be hard to settle, because there doesn’t seem to be any middle ground. Brady doesn’t want to accept any suspension or admit guilt. He can’t, it would make him look like a liar. Goodell isn’t gonna reduce the suspension to zero. He can’t. Shows no inclination to anyway. And, some of the owners seem to have his back. Funny how those teams are all on the Pats schedule. The fair thing to do would be for Goodell to agree to an independent arbitor(Not his lackey Henderson). He can’t do that either, he’d look like a fool again. Remember, after several go around between the Saints players and Goodell, Vilma finally requested Goodell appoint an independent arbitor. Goodell didn’t have to, but he relented and appointed Tagliabue. Tagliabue then blew him up by overturning every player suspension, but keeping the fines. That’s not gonna happen again.

    The biggest hurdle for Brady is still gonna be to get the judge to take the case. The players bargained away Goodell’s right to be the arbitor. It’s a pretty high bar to get a judge to directly interfere with that. It’s a long shot. And please, stop bringing up the Missouri case. It’s similar, but with different circumstances.

  61. Ok seriously, to everybody calling for Brady’s head and claiming “the golden boy always gets what he wants”. IF (and that’s a BIG “if”) they agree on a settlement of just paying a fine and missing no games, it is an admission on the league’s part that they found NOTHING. There has never been any proof that Brady did or instructed anybody to do something wrong and the only text messages they found between Brady and a ball boy regarding PSI was Brady instructing them to refer to the RULE BOOK and show the refs so he can have his balls set at the LEGAL level of 12.5 psi. I know you so badly want to believe that Brady cheated, but he didn’t. If you truly believe that he would risk his legacy and ability to play the game he loves on a couple psi in a football, then you’re nuts and there is no help for you. Florio said it himself, if they agree on a settlement involving no games missed, it’s because the judge (the same one the league wanted covering the case) told the NFL “you will get nothing if you push this”. If you want to hate Brady because he wins, that’s fine… it’s your right. But hating him for something he didn’t do is just asinine.

  62. Still posted………….

    Chris Mortensen ‏@mortreport Jan 20
    NFL has found that 11 of the Patriots footballs used in Sunday’s AFC title game were under-inflated by 2 lbs each, per league sources.

    Fool

  63. “Why should Brady agree to settle?”

    He’s not agreeing to settle. He’s agreeing to not waste the court’s time calling new witness, introducing frivolous discovery motions, etc. Essentially both sides have agreed that they want this over before the season starts. Both sides have very strong motivations for a quick resolution.

    Brady and Kessler think their case is strong enough that they can make their argument based on legal reasoning and the record from the NFL’s hearings. Personally, I would agree with them. I won’t pretend either to be unbiased or to have legal training, though.

    I would predict that Brady pays a fine for obstructing the investigation and that the judge throws out the “probably generally aware” nonsense. Brady is not contesting the charge that he obstructed the investigation, just the penalty for doing so.

  64. “The biggest hurdle for Brady is still gonna be to get the judge to take the case. The players bargained away Goodell’s right to be the arbitor. It’s a pretty high bar to get a judge to directly interfere with that. It’s a long shot. And please, stop bringing up the Missouri case. It’s similar, but with different circumstances.”

    That would be true if Brady were challenging the findings. He’s only challenging procedural issues. Goodell has lost in court a few times over the past year on grounds very similar.

  65. No settlement. He cheated, conspired to cover it up and this court appeal is costing the league money, more reason to let him have it!!

  66. False.

    If anything, the judge is going to tell the NFLPA that they have two options:

    1. Brady publicly admits guilt and role in delfating footballs, in exchange for at best a 2 game reduction in the suspension (which the NFLPA would jump all over but Brady would absolutely refuse)

    Or 2. Brady serves all 4 games because this is a workplace discipline issue, settled via binding arbitration, which Brady and every other player agreed to when they signed the CBA.

    I dont care how much it bothers some of the posters here, but its a done deal that Brady will have to admit guilt to avoid the full 4 games.

  67. gurnblanstonreturns says:
    Jul 31, 2015 3:32 PM
    What a whitewash! Goodell gets to look tough by upholding Brady’s suspension, then – abracadabra – a settlement is announced reversing the penalties. I wouldn’t be surprised if the team penalties are reversed as well. Kraft gets what he wants. Brady gets what he wants. Goodell gets what he really wants, but can’t admit.

    The Great Belichick Asterisk Era continues.

    Nothing to see here, just move along.
    —————————————————-

    I nominate this as “post of the day” and fear you may be right. In the end this whole drama will end up being about nothing. Brady will skate, the commissioner will get to look like he didn’t cave, and both sides will claim vindication.

    The Patriots will breathe a huge sigh of relief that they didn’t have to air some pretty dirty laundry in court, and their fans will claim it somehow proves Brady was innocent.

    Most of all, the Deflator never will have to tell us the true meaning of that hilarious moniker. THAT might be the biggest shame of all.

  68. From the beginning this has been a manufactured story from the NFL feeding information to ESPN. The longer it went the more it has become unraveled, when the facts are actually looked at.
    You cannot unring a bell and once Kencil leaked to Mortenson the “story” about under inflated footballs the whole investigation was tainted.
    Now the emails have come to light as well from the Patriots to the NFL offices which continue to cast Roger and his minions in a bad light.
    Call it a day NFL, invoke a small fine for Brady for “not cooperating” rescind the suspension and call it a day.

  69. Goodell only lost in the Rice and Peterson instances because he tried to apply new punishment standards to infractions that happened when the old standards were in place. In Rice’s case, after he had already punished him under the old standards, before the tape came out. Those things don’t apply in Brady’s case. There are some procedural issues, but I still think they’re longshots. I hope not.

  70. Brady, the Pats and the NFLPA are making this a total mess. No one (except Jim Irsay) cared that the Pats let some air out of footballs because Brady liked them that way. They cared about the conduct after the fact. Based on the Pats responses and Brady’s Pinocchio Presser, it became clear 1) Brady knew, 2) He knew it was wrong and 3) He and others wanted to cover it up.

    I’ve often wondered why Brady didn’t just say “I like the footballs soft, the equipment guys know it, so sometimes they let at little air out. I never dreamed it was against the rules or below whatever PSI the league sets. I apologize and will do everything I can to personally make sure they don’t do this again.” They would have (maybe) paid a fine and that would have been it.

    Why didn’t he do that? Because that’s clearly not what happened. Everything we know points to a conspiracy to cheat–the balls taken into the bathroom, the Deflator nickname, the refusal to allow his texts to be searched, the public statements by Brady and the League, the destroying of the phone, the “no evidence” defense–all of it. THAT’S why his suspension was upheld, and why the NFL is probably going to win in court. At this point I’m all in on the NFL’s side. I hope he gets the full four games.

  71. The NFL will not back down, nor should they. They gave Brady every opportunity to lower the number of games but Brady just mocked them. This has always been about the integrity of the game and the public’s confidence in it. Any real and true football knows this. And Brady defiled it and has probably been doing it for years

  72. michaelg1963 says:
    Jul 31, 2015 4:47 PM
    From the beginning this has been a manufactured story from the NFL feeding information to ESPN. The longer it went the more it has become unraveled, when the facts are actually looked at.
    You cannot unring a bell and once Kencil leaked to Mortenson the “story” about under inflated footballs the whole investigation was tainted.
    Now the emails have come to light as well from the Patriots to the NFL offices which continue to cast Roger and his minions in a bad light.
    Call it a day NFL, invoke a small fine for Brady for “not cooperating” rescind the suspension and call it a day.
    ———-

    Regardless of the League’s conduct, Brady and the Pats’ conduct clearly shows they are guilty of both cheating and covering it up. The “no hard evidence” defense is nonsense. The League doesn’t need hard evidence…it’s not a court of law.

  73. patsbrat says:
    Jul 31, 2015 3:43 PM

    I am really having a hard time understanding how fans from other teams are so convinced that Brady cheated. Read the science in the Wells report, not the spin.

    The biggest question around this whole thing is why did Wells switch the guages?

    The details of this decision have never been detailed. And it is the crux that makes it “seem” that air was taken out of the balls.
    ———————————–

    He had to switch the gauges, or the scam wouldn’t have worked. They likely crapped their pants when they started measuring the Colts footballs, and saw that they too were below the league minimum.

    This whole debacle has been handled worse than the Warren Commission.

  74. If I was advising Brady, I’d tell him to settle for nothing less than complete hysterectomies for Kensil, Harbaugh, Grigson, Pagano, Pash, and goodell, as well as for any other jetscrement in the league office.

    That way we’d know there was no chance of this pond scum ever reproducing vile spawn.

  75. Professor:

    You couldn’t be more wrong. The NFLPA could not care less about Brady and making a deal. This isn’t about Brady for them it’s about Goodell. They want to destroy the current CBA and would love to use Brady situation as an opportunity to again destroy him in federal court.

    According to reports support for the “deflate-gate” debacle, and more importantly the money Goodell is spending on it (money out of the owners pockets), is starting to waiver amongst the owners. Granted they will never say it publicly. But don’t be surprised if both sides come to an agreement soon, an agreement that will upset those expecting any admission of guilt or a 4 game suspension for Brady.

    Again, just because some of you are ignoring it, the NFL league office under Roger Goodell has set precedent in regards to team employees tampering with footballs. Goodell’s past ruling is that per the CBA team employees tampering with footballs falls under the “competitive integrity” policy; a policy that applies to NFL teams only.

    Also, no NFL player has ever been suspended for being “generally aware” of anything and no NFL player has ever been suspended for not cooperating in an NFL investigation.

  76. jrossizzle says:
    Jul 31, 2015 4:57 PM

    I see 4 game checks and a “no contest” plea coming

    Wish someone could produce TB’s text messages….
    __________
    Where is anonymous when we need them?

  77. If you want proof the NFL had it out for the Pats just check out the email exchange between the Pats front office and Jeff Pash from back in February. The Pats were trying to get the Mort report of 2 lbs underinflated corrected by the NFL, and what Pash wrote back is damning to the NFL. This alone proves it was a witch hunt from the get go. The emails just came to light today.

  78. ampatsisahypocrite says:
    Jul 31, 2015 4:44 PM

    blah blah blah

    In the end this whole drama will end up being about nothing.

    blah blah blah
    ———————————

    That’s because it is about nothing. Thank you for finally seeing the light!

  79. I was so looking forwardv to see Goodell lie on the stand. It would be new territory even for him. He’s been lieing to fans for years, he lied s couple of times on TV to America, and he got caught in a lie in a deposition in the Vilma/Bountygate slander lawsuit.

    Still, I don’t think he can claim a spot in the Guiness Book of World Records until he lies in person, under oath, in court.

  80. With the news coming out today that ex-Jets employee and current NFL executive Mike Kensil was behind the “leak” to ESPN that inspired the fake “eleven out of twelve balls” story, it becomes more and more likely that this was some sort of hamhanded Colts/NFL sting.

    Kensil gets a call from Ryan Grigson prior to the game, shows up at the game to tell the Patriots “they’re in big trouble” at halftime. Spearheads the investigation into the matter, “leaks” a story that just happens to murder Brady/the Patriots’ credibility, and a story that hasn’t been redacted despite being proven false days after it aired.

    Gotta wonder how many people involved in this are ex-Jets. The only one that isn’t is Troy Vincent, because both Roger Goodell and Mike Kensil are. Bias, much?

  81. Evidence? Who needs evidence? Everyone knows they’re guilty. Because I want them to be. With all my heart. That’s why my team lost. I can’t get over it. I’m a: Rams, Raiders, AFCEast, Colts, Broncos, Steeler, Ravens, Seahawks, Texans: fan(pick one).

    Or, is it just that the legion of haters come out to post the same thing every day because of their concern for the integrity of the game? Riiiggghhht.

  82. “I have doubts that piecemeal disclosures are likely to accomplish much,” “If anything, I would think they are likely to prompt additional questions, additional stories, and additional irresponsible speculation and commentary.” “Once the investigation is completed and the facts are known, any incorrect reporting will be shown for what it is” – NFL lead counsel Jeff Pash via email to the New England Patriots when the Patriots expressed concerns about the false reports being leaked to ESPN after the AFC championship game.

  83. Newsflash tedmurph, Brady already looks like a liar, talks like a liar, and does things guilty people that have something to hide do – destroy evidence, and not cooperate with an investigation. Brady is already too far gone from saving face. Only way he reduces his suspension is to come clean and we all know that isn’t going to happen, so Mr. Bündchen should plan on a 4 week vacation next season. BOOK IT!

  84. As a Buffalo Bills fan, I really want Brady to play in the second game of the season at the Ralph. He is a great QB, and I would rather beat them (if we beat them) with Brady playing.

    As an NFL fan, it is crazy what he and the Pats seem to get away with. If there is not at least a one game suspension (and should be four), this will be an awful precedent for the future.

    The good news is that the Pats fumble stats should fall in line with the rest of the league now that the NFL is actually going make sure the footballs have the correct psi.

    P.S. After reading way too many articles on this site about this matter, it is odd that every slant and inference seems to go Brady’s way. Curious.

  85. OK What is Kessler talking to the NFL lawyers informs them that they have broken the CBA themselves and explains there is no way the judge would not agree that they have? Then the NFL would be obviously more compliant to whatever seems fair to Tom Brady which would be a 4 game fine most likely suggested by Attorney Kessler with no admission of guilt and no suspension. The NFL might hate it or not like it but many think their hands may be so dirty what choice would they have? Kessler is no fool and he has given much prove to that fact. So I am saying the NFL botched the case long ago by withholding information and breaking the rules of the CBA. Kessler convinces them they cannot win because of that and all 38 of them know it so….. There you have it.. free Tom Brady or else!

  86. When they agree to not have any additional testimony they believe there is enough evidence present to make their case.
    None are as blind as those who will not see.
    Patriot fans are focused on parts of the evidence that support their case and ignore the obvious lies and cover up.
    May the Deflator be with you.

  87. The greatest leverage Brady has heading into this court case is that he has consistently declared his innocence and has never wavered from this position.

    So, really, all Brady needs to do when questioned by the Judge is to continue to insist he is innocent and then invite the NFL to reveal/introduce any and all evidence that contradicts his declaration of innocence.

    And remember, this is a court of law, so when I say evidence, I mean concrete evidence, not “we think it’s more probable than not that this is what happened”.

    But we all know the NFL has no such evidence. If they did, it would have been in the Wells report. It would have been used to leverage Brady during the appeals process.

    So barring some amazing revelation that somehow hasn’t been intentionally leaked yet, Brady is going to win this. And win big.

    And then the NFL owners are going to be having a conversation with Goodell. And that is not going to go well for Goodell.

  88. “I work for the Patriots, as well as for 31 other clubs and the Commissioner. Sometimes that creates tension, as it apparently has here” – Jeff Pash NFL, via email, in response to the Patriots anger at the league office refusing to publicly address the false reports on ESPN shortly after the AFC championship game. By the way in the email chain Jeff Pash acknowledges the fact that the reports are false but refuses to address them publicly. He also denies that the leak is from the league office. (Guess what? It was)

  89. Too bad all of the scientific evidence says the Patriots didn’t do anything.

    The NFL would have a real good case otherwise.

  90. Pbw44

    The now infamous fumble data that claimed to prove that the Patriots have been deflating footballs for years has since been debunked. The reason? Because the data is flawed. The author compared the Patriots fumble statistics to all 32 teams over a period of multiple years. The problem with this is the Patriots have consistently won 12+ games a year for more than a decade. No other team has. Succesful football teams win the turnover battle. When you compare the Patriots per year to the other 10-12 win football teams their fumble data is consisent with those other teams.

  91. Patsfourings, Brady was never charged with tampering with footballs. I was always about circumventing a known rule to get an unfair advantage in a game where it basically renders the final score and the stats of the game to be unreliable. While it is a desperate attempt to claim this is just an equipment violation, it just fly. No judge is going to see it that way. Brady’s excuses for not being punished are so demeaning to the true football fan, if our kids used the same ones, we give them double punishment for using them.

  92. Brady already looks like a liar, talks like a liar, and does things guilty people that have something to hide do

    —————————————————–
    Thank you for making my point.

  93. For anyone who desires to know the truth – you can read: Tom Pelissero, USA TODAY Sports 12:26 p.m. EDT July 30, 2015

    In the end we are right back where this all started = Goodell MUST GO!

  94. Oneforthetumb, you are wrong. Brady challenged the science in his appeal by bringing in the AEI Report and expert. All the points that were brought up in the AEI Report were covered in the Exponent Report. In the end, Brady’s experts had to concede to the Exponent Report. Which is why Brady is fighting his punishment. Not fighting for his innocence.

  95. daytontriangles says:
    Jul 31, 2015 5:35 PM
    The greatest leverage Brady has heading into this court case is that he has consistently declared his innocence and has never wavered from this position.

    So, really, all Brady needs to do when questioned by the Judge is to continue to insist he is innocent and then invite the NFL to reveal/introduce any and all evidence that contradicts his declaration of innocence.

    And remember, this is a court of law, so when I say evidence, I mean concrete evidence, not “we think it’s more probable than not that this is what happened”.

    But we all know the NFL has no such evidence. If they did, it would have been in the Wells report. It would have been used to leverage Brady during the appeals process.

    So barring some amazing revelation that somehow hasn’t been intentionally leaked yet, Brady is going to win this. And win big.

    And then the NFL owners are going to be having a conversation with Goodell. And that is not going to go well for Goodell.

    ——————————–

    Wow. That is some fairy tale and some very tortured logic. You might as well throw in the massive defamation of character suit that Patriots fans keep fantasizing about.

    You do realize that Brady’s guilt has already been determined. The court case is not about exonerating Brady, you know that right?

    It’s about procedure and whether Goodell overstepped his authority. Tom’s innocence? Not at all.

    The court may or may not vacate Tom Terrific’s suspension based on CBA rules but he will not be exonerating him.

    And before you go about trumpetting St. Tom’s stance :

    Ryan Braun let lose an unholy media tirade worse than Krafts but he was guilty.

    Lance Armstrong sued anyone and everyone who suggested he was doping but he was guilty.

    Arod sued everyone, etc.

    Barry Bonds went to congress and lied through his teeth.

    The number of Athletes suing claiming their innocence to the heavens is legion. The number who are actually proven innocent in the end? Well maybe, you can find one because I don’t remember this ending well for any of them.

    The good news is that even if you cheat and are convicted most fans and leagues turn a blind eye to it if you can still play. ARod and Braun still get cheered even though they both were found conclusively guilty, were ridiculed in the press and served lengthy suspensions . Braun even got to keep his MVP award even though it can be proven that he was cheating the entire season he won it. That bodes well for Brady as that eliminates a worst case scenerio for him.

  96. The NFL better settle.

    Anyone read the emails that from Patriots counsel to Jeff Pash?

    The Patriots repeated panic-stricken emails about the Leagues false leaks and smear campaign against NE are met with emails Jeff Pash email responses that seem to be authored by a person who doesn’t understand the English language.
    What a witch hunt this was, is and continues to be.

    Pash could not be more evasive, duplicitous, scheming and non-responsive to Robin Glaser and Stacy James.

    This truly is a real, honest to God conspiracy to trounce the NE Patriots brand and image.

    And all of the Haters folded right into the expected behavior pattern of Guilty with no chance of being innocent. Suckers.

    What a complete and utter farce.

    Why hasn’t PFT reported on these emails and Mort’s refusal and wussing out of going on the radio today to face the music?

    All we see is freakin stories about Russell Wilson contract.

    #thejigisup
    #thefixwasin
    #kensilisadeadmanwalking

  97. I’ve said all along that a four-game fine, with no acknowledgment of wrongdoing from Brady, would make the most sense. Although the NFL may strenuously object to that outcome, the league could feel differently if/when Judge Berman says, “You can take no suspension and a four-game fine, or you’ll get no suspension and no fine. It’s up to you.”

    ———————————

    Other media members might carry water for the NFL but you are carrying the entire Pacific ocean for the NFLPA and Brady. Bashing Smith (not an unreasonable thing to do normally) for carrying the NFL’s water and mentioning that you think everything the NFL is doing is unseemly while not criticizing the NFLPA for doing the same things.

    Just put an NFLPA logo on the website and be done with it.

    Nice balanced article there where your only 2 possible outcomes is the NFL losing completely or the NFL losing humiliatingly.

    Not saying it won’t happen or can’t happen but it is far from the lock you make it seem.

    As others have mentioned, why would the NFLPA settle if those were the NFL’s only options?

  98. Limakey,
    You and I are on opposite sides of this argument. But your posts today are exactly the reason why I believe that Brady must initiate a defamation lawsuit. You are making statements that are not grounded in fact. Brady has never acknowledged he participated in anything to do with unnatural deflation of footballs at any time. And neither has anyone else on the Patriots. Everything is based purely on conjecture and even then, the entire case is based on absurd summaries of known facts.
    This is not a joke. Brady has worked hard in his career. And the fact that there are many like yourself whose opinions have been formed based on spurious data, he has no option but to go to court, argue his case based on provable data and accept the consequences. If he can’t convince a judge then so be it, accept the indignation of comments such as yours. If he does win in court, even though it may not change your opinion, at least he can hold his head up and say I did everything I could to exonerate myself.

  99. @pats4rings
    “NEVER in the history of the NFL has a player been suspended for not cooperating in an NFL investigation.”

    Are you implying that if a player (and I’m not saying Brady did) obstructs or refuses to comply with an investigation, there should be no punishment? That’s a ludicrous argument.

    “NEVER in the history of the NFL has a player been suspended for an equipment violation.”

    Never before has there been a situation like this that would compel you to believe there was wrongdoing. While they haven’t found a smoking gun, there is certainly some circumstantial evidence that doesn’t look good for Brady and the Pats….

    Why did he destroy his phone?

    Why did he refer to the equipment guy as ‘the deflator’?

    Why did the Pats fire their own equipment guy if he did nothing wrong?

    These are all things that can innocently be answered individually, but add them all up, and it just looks bad.

  100. Rootpain, if Brady did file a defamation suit, a judge would throw it out. He has shattered his credibility and his integrity with the destroyed cell phone. The NFL will have lawyers too. He has always claimed no knowledge if it was done and wouldn’t know the difference. He did challenge the Exponent Report and it failed. The judge will decidING this case will base it solely on the findings of the Wells Report, the balls were tampered with.

  101. If this fat-headed Patsie QB doesn’t see it, his refusal to co-operate with the NFL has ALREADY ruined his reputation forever…He has not even considered being the bigger man, and letting this personal quest for his giant ego go… He can never fix this…He can drive sports cars and sleep with super-models, But now and forever he will always be known as a creepy Cheater…No glory in that, and he did it to himself … Stop the stupid whining- Let’s play football…

  102. Limakey,
    Slight error there. Balls were not deflated unnaturally. So no guilt. Possibly guilty of being confused. Who wouldn’t be based on illegally distributed erronious information.
    It’s still not too late for you Limakey to accept that Brady was targeted by the NFL simply because he was upsetting the leagues plan for parity. That’s not a real offence though.
    Brady will play all games in 2015 season. We will still accept you as a Patriots supporter. Come on over.

  103. Rootpain, so why isn’t Brady challenging the Wells Report findings that the balls were tampered with? Right, he did that in his appeal with the AEI Report and lost. So why is his defense that this is a club employee offense and because he is a player, he should not be punished for the offense. More importantly, why has he not hired his own team of science experts to prove the balls were not tampered with?

  104. Oh and Rootpain, I live in New England and as long as JG is at QB, I will root for the Pats. In fact, I hope he destroys every single team and leads the Pats to the Superbowl. It will be perfect justice for Brady to lose his starting job due to cheating and lying. We all know injuries and suspensions are golden opportunities for other players to earn the starting job. And we all know Brady is not the Pats future.

  105. BoulderPhinfan says:
    Jul 31, 2015 3:28 PM

    “I’m done with the NFL is Brady 4 suspension is not upheld.

    He gets every call now he can cheat as well and get away with it. I’ll watch WWF. Its more real”.

    —————————————————–

    I watch both all NFL games, have the NFL Channel as well as WWE They are very similar. In recent years the NFL has become lopsided, I mean by that more entertainment and less football as it was meant to be played.

    Similarly, professional wrestling has become all story lines, a soap opera with vague allusions and “demonstrations” of what wrestling used to be.

    Welcome to the world of Sports Entertainment.

  106. Hey Brady Haters, not everything is lost yet. Goodell and Woody Johnson are dangling over 75 million of debt he NFL’s money trying to buy the judge to rule for them.

    If that fails, hey, you still have Chip Kelly and Tebow to hate just because you have to have someone to hate.

  107. All teams should just start cheating blatantly if Brady gets pardoned. That would really shake things up in the NFL. Thier defense ” I thought cheating was acceptable.” Would never happen but I would love to see what happens.

  108. Defend the wall 🏈🏆🏆🏆🏆 Patriot FANS
    Kiss them rings💍💍💍💍haters!!!
    TB12 + BB = G.O.A.T. 😘🏈 😘😡😍😂 😘🏆🏆🏆🏆🙌 😉☝️😂😭😂 “11 out of 12 footballs 2 or more PSI below legal” without immediate correction by the NFL made it a big deal, which is exactly what they wanted, fully knowing it wasn’t even true.

    It’s not like it turned out that the NFL was “more probable than not generally aware” that that statement was false.

    THEY KNEW IT WAS FALSE FROM THE MOMENT IT WAS PUBLISHED!

    And yet, they allowed the hate to fester, like an infected boil with puss oozing out.

    Huh…. Integrity? Right…….

    1st off. I don’t understand the big deal!
    Losing the picks especially the 1st round is the only thing that sucks!
    Look we get to have TB12 have a shorter season and see what our future franchise QB has potentially!!!!!!!!! It’s a win win!!!!!!

    And Kraft just found out he didn’t have much support from the other owners. It’s above our pay grade to simply understand. There’s a whole lotta politics goin on behind the scenes.
    Just hoping Kraft & BB TEAR IT UP THIS YEAR.
    And also fingers crossed they GO CRAZY during Next Years Free Agency for the penalized draft picks.

    Simply put all that matters is he concentrates on getting TB12 the number five💍ring he deserves!!!!🙏🏆
    NOTHING ELSE MATTERS‼️

    We’re alright Pats Nation. I’m still enjoying the high of #4
    😘🏆🏆🏆🏆🙌
    😉😂😭😂

    So your saying AP & RR whippings isn’t as bad as some psi? Though pats never even took out air.
    In all seriousness I want u to think about this. Your obviously biased I believe so I think it’s safe to assume Goodell and company absolutely saw the elevator video BEFORE THE 1st 2game suspension and they now are saying its twice as bad to take a little air out of a ball (THOUGH:New England Patriots evidence proves they didn’t)
    Common sense should tell you something not right.
    It’s so sad, fans and all the other 31teams should have this franchises back.PERIOD. Wait till it happens to them. Only good thing out of this is who the nfl is going against.
    The New England Patriots will hopefully fight this to the end and prevail for the rest of the league. Whether they realize it now or not….
    💋🏆🏆🏆🏆🙌👋

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