Tom Brady wasn’t “exonerated”


Patriots fans have spent most of the day rejoicing Judge Berman’s decision in the Tom Brady case, and rightfully so. But to the extent that anyone believes Judge Berman “exonerated” Brady, the celebration is going a little farther than it should.

Judge Berman didn’t exonerate Brady. More specifically, Judge Berman didn’t find that Tom Brady had no awareness or involvement in an alleged (or actual) football deflation scheme. Judge Berman also didn’t find that Brady did not obstruct an NFL investigation.

Instead, Judge Berman found that, even if Brady is guilty as charged, he can’t be suspended. The NFL Players Association wisely refrained from putting it in those terms, since it would have caused some in the media to claim that the NFLPA is conceding that Brady is guilty. (When, for example, the NFL argued to Judge Berman that it doesn’t matter whether Ted Wells was truly “independent,” some thought the NFL was admitting that Wells wasn’t independent.)

The question for Judge Berman wasn’t whether Brady did or didn’t do it, even though some of his questions to the lawyers suggested that Judge Berman was curious about whether Brady did or didn’t do it. The question was whether the NFL had the power to suspend Brady. Judge Berman concluded that the NFL did not have that power.

117 responses to “Tom Brady wasn’t “exonerated”

  1. the ruling is he was treated unfairly, and fairness requires more than going through the motions of an appeal.

    the rest can be inferred by berman’s questioning the scientific awareness of the nfl team the night of the game, and editorial comments about brady’s performance in the second half.

  2. The judge made his decision. Everyone has to live with it wether they approve or not. Can we now move on to more important things in life. I’m getting tired of this story.

  3. The Wells Report states that Brady “probably” knew something . . which amounts to hearsay and any competent judge who values his credibility would be forced to overturn it. The Deflategate spectacle was nothing more than an ESPN sponsored charade highlighting how many people are likely to believe anything they’re told

  4. It was quite clear that the essence of the judge’s ruling is that Brady could be fined for cheating but he couldn’t be suspended. The ruling did not clear Brady of cheating.

  5. Which the grand schemer Bill Belicheat knew it would work out that way all along. Bill would get banned but Tom at worst would get a $25000 fine. Brady has proven he can throw any ball. Now about the league record for lowest fumble percentage over 9 years. No, Biil’s not that smart or devious. Yeah right.

  6. The details don’t matter to pats fans.

    You can tell this by the number of them still droning on about Aaron Rodgers, when what he said was in no way a rule violation.

    Little things like ‘innocent’ vs ‘overpunished’ or ‘before balls are inspected and approved’ and ‘after’ have no meaning to them.

  7. And conversely, if Brady lost the appeal, it would not have meant that he was guilty of anything, but simply that Judge Berman felt there should be limits placed on the League Office’s powers to dispense its curious brand of justice.

  8. Semantics. The drooling troll haters had their minds made up before Mortensen’s false report even surfaced. People who use logic and are truly non-biased see this case for what it really is…a witch hunt.

  9. The judge didn’t have to exonerate Brady. The NFL took care of this when they admitted in court that they have no direct evidence of alleged “general awareness” or Goodell’s fictional “ball deflation scheme”.

  10. Only a fair investigation and hearing would have exonerated Tom Brady. The problem is that never happened. Instead, we had a clown show by the NFL with Mike Kensil, Roger Goodell, endless leaks to Mortensen, Kravetz, Stephen A Smith, and King and grandstanding by the league office. The real shame is that there was no real search for the truth and only childish games with the intention of working backwards to confirm charges made by the Colts. To that effect, Tom Brady never got justice. He did get vindication and the right to play football. Other teams should not want to beat the Patriots without Tom Brady. They should want to challenge themselves and take on the biggest challenge. That should be what everyone wants.

  11. I wonder where Brady sent the two ball boy’s on vacation to be quiet. and how come no one has heard from these guy’s I thought when you loose your job you get another one.

  12. No matter how much Goodell tries to hide behind ”The Shield” his legacy is shattered. Not only will he go down as the worst commissioner in NFL history, he will go down as the worst commissioner in SPORTS history. This guy is going to make Gary Bettman hater’s say ”Well, at least he wasn’t as stupid as Goodell”.

  13. Judge Berman didn’t nor should he have done anything to “exonerate” Brady in this task. His focus was on process in this exercise.

    For those that bother to read the court transcripts, you can see to what end he didn’t agree with the NFL’s ever-changing accusations about Brady.

  14. No, Judge Berman just mocked the NFL case in a number of hearings. His ruling is supposed to adhere to the CBA and he did that well to minimize the risk that it will be overturned on appeal.

    As for exoneration, that’s not possible. Nor is it possible to establish guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. And maybe that’s the point. There is so few facts in this case that it should have never have yielded any kind of adjudication (or even seen its day in any kind of “court”). The NFL leaked it, the media blew it out of proportion, so the NFL felt like it had to investigate (a self-fulfilling prophecy), and it did that according to its biases and produced a decision via a process everyone thinks is out of step with the American justice system.

  15. C’mon. We all no he was involved. The point is the crime didn’t deserve a 4 game suspension. There are levels of cheating. This level of cheating should not have an equal penalty as someone who’s taking steroids.

  16. Owners will want Goodell to drop the appeal. League office has multiple black eyes at this point. You will see people like Kensil and Gardi leave (pushed out) and Pash will be fired. Goodell is very good at protecting Goodell.

  17. @m8gaman: Whatever helps you sleep at night, buddy.

    Brady and the pats got over.

    Good for them.

    Looking forward to the start of the season.

  18. Exonerated? Not yet. But the question is there any exoneration needed without any proponderance of evidence? I thought the judge couldn’t ignore the NFLs procedural blunders that prevented him from even beginning to rule on a “alleged” infraction!

  19. I agree, Mike, but the fact remains that to many of us this is nothing but a trumped-up bunch of crap.

    When 4 Colts balls were tested and 3 were under “approved” psi, but only the Pats get called out, what is that?

    I say the Patriots are being punished for something and it has nothing to do with football psi.

    And I’ll bet the Ravens organization knows what I’m talking about.

  20. Remember Charlie Brown shows? This is what you sound like up there: whaaaanuh whaanut whahnaaa whaunuh whaunuh…

    Off the hook baby, let’s get ready for some football!

  21. He was treated unfairly by the NFL. It’s that simple. If they had just done their job (oh, the irony of a BB saying) instead of making it personal and changing the finish line and straight up lying and not allowing them to actually defend fairly and lying again, etc, etc., nothing would have happened.

    But Kensil and Grigson were so sure something happened that they were too hard to leak the info and hurt the Pats before petty, minor things like science and physics could be brought in.

    And Goodell wasn’t strong enough (oh the irony of some guy called “The Enforcer”) to stand up to his subordinates and instead jumped in with both feet.

    And it led to this because of petty revenge and a complete lack of real leadership.

  22. .
    My understanding was that the case before Judge Berman was strictly about process, and he found the process unfair. He was never asked about ” dorito dink ” and other such sideshows.

  23. Thank you. Some of these fans are ridiculous. I get being happy, but don’t read something into the ruling that isn’t there.

  24. The case was an easy call for the Judge. Goodell framed Brady and Judge Berman reminded the commissioner he isn’t God; Goodell, too, is accountable under the law.

  25. -Berman called it the “Wells/Pash Investigation”.

    -Berman put “independent” in quotes every single time.

    -Berman called it an “alleged” offence, even though that wasn’t within his remit.

    -Berman got the NFL to admit there was no evidence against Brady.

  26. Actually, considering the Judge referred to the charges against Brady as ‘alleged’ in his ruling, and not an actual offense, don’t you think that speaks volumes?

  27. I’m a Pats fan, but anyone who thinks Brady and the Patriots were “exonerated” doesn’t know what they’re talking about. This decision was all about due process and procedure. It had nothing to do with the “facts” of the case and quite frankly, if you read the decision closely, it seems pretty clear that Judge Berman is perfectly willing to accept the finding by the NFL that there was some manipulation of footballs by the Patriots and that Brady was generally aware; he just took a dump on the way the NFL decided to arbitrarily punish Brady.

  28. It was not Bermans charge to determine guilt or innocence. It is and was about process. Berman found the process to be lacking fairness and his documentation is written in that manner in order to pass the appeal process.

    That said – he was clearly dubious of any guilt. That became quite clear when he questioned the NFL.

    It is my opinion that Berman saw Brady was innocent and therefore found a way to exonerate him via the process. When the league investigators say there is no tangible proof then what more did Berman need?

    Had he truly felt Brady was guilty he could just as easily have submitted a finding that Article 46 stands firm.

  29. The ruling is what many of us have said for months: the process itself as fundamentally flawed and unfair. Just like criminal convictions being tossed when the police break the law gathering evidence, Brady goes free because the league lied and cheated to obtain its preferred results – and didn’t even fairly interpret the flawed evidence in the first place. Brady isn’t being exonerated for the simple reason that the league didn’t and can’t show his guilt in the first place. But if it comes to that, he will win again.

    Also worth noting that the few folks still supporting Goodell after this benchslap are lining up behind a guy who didn’t know that pressures change when temperatures do. Good luck with that.

  30. he cheated. everyone knows it. if you disagree you are the worst kind of person alive, the kind that lies to themselves

  31. Berman had no legal authority to make any finding of the facts themselves. He upheld the right of employers to adjudicate disciplinary matters.

    No notice was the primary reason for vacating. Compounding that he found the lack of discovery and the lack of ability for the accused to confront a key witness also grounds for vacating. He also found the notion that the investigation was independent ridiculous, and that the Brady had a competitive advantage in the first half ridiculous.

    He did not find that any intentional deflation had taken place or that Brady was generally aware.. He did find “generally aware” to be an absurd notion. Everything Berman said or wrote indicted he found the case itself to be hogwash.

    If he had ruled in the league’s favor he still would have said they made no case, but they had the right to interpet the bogus report.

  32. #tainted4ever, the Lance Armstrong of the NFL

    The struggle is still real for deflatriot fans.

  33. In order for Brady to even be CONSIDERED as culpable for someone letting air out of a ball – don’t you have to actually show the footballs were actually deflated?

    The Wells Report itself can only make that assertion by:
    1.) Asserting the Laws of Physics are suspended for football games and
    2.) Asserting that the same guy who has the BEST MEMORY in the world when it comes to remembering 24 PSI readings suddenly has the WORST memory when it comes to the simple question of which guage he used

    Unless you accept BOTH of those premises put forward by an NFL Commissioner who correctly surmised that MOST NFL fans have an IQ no higher than a Jersey number, the footballs were deflated

    Meanwhile we have LONG LIST of LEAKS, LIES and LIBEL from a Commissioner who has now been proven over and over to have no ethics or integrity

    Patriots haters can continue to humiliate themselves by showing that they actually BELIEVE all of the above, but anyone with common sense knows that this was a set up by the corrupt owners and commissioner of the NFL

  34. Did the judge rule that the dude letting the air out of Brady’s balls called himself “the deflator” because, in fact, he was losing weight?

    Good lawyers can’t make a lame excuse look like anything but a lame excuse.

  35. During the court hearings he said that he did not see anything related to the game of Jan 18th. During the whole sordid affair the NFL has put out lies concerning the facts of the allegations. The case could not be proven in a court of law that Brady or anyone actually deflated footballs, that the attendant deflated a football, that the footballs actually definitively were uninflated beyond the ideal gas law (thanks Mona Lisa Vito). So to say that Brady had to prove his innocence is wrong. The NFL never proved that he or anyone else was guilty. This was a frameup from the beginning with the Ravens, Colts and Jets heavy NFL front office involved in the sting that never was. It is a disgusting display of unchecked power by the owners and league office. They almost got away with it. Now they will try to win with their corporate friendly judges on the appellate court.

  36. Roman style over the top coronation coming on the opener. Complete with circus animals, and parading defeated league execs into the coliseum of Gillette! Get your popcorn ready!

  37. Who really cares anymore, bottom line TB will forever have that asterisk in many minds that he crossed the line in the rules and integrity of the game. I personally am glad this is over with and he is not suspended. What’s done is done and he himself will always know that he crossed the line and broke the rules to his advantage. He has to live with that. Great QB no doubt, but I am glad this disaster is over and done.
    For all you Pats fans, the AFC east has gotten much better so don’t book your super bowl tickets just yet.

  38. Brady will never be exhorated nor should he be. I think the judge made some calls he shouldn’t have, but he is the judge. The NFL will win on appeal.

  39. Brady was found guilty of cheating and was fined by the NFL, and the Patriots were stripped of draft choices. The 4 game suspension was lifted by one particular judge, but the guilty verdict is set in stone forever.

  40. I can tell all of you that I have personally heard from impeccable sources, the same sources that Chris Mortensen, Bob Kravitz and Lester Munson use for their reports, that Judge Berman personally called Roger Goodell and Tom Brady to declare Tom Brady and the New England Patriots completely innocent of all charges as well as the accompanying innuendo, libel and slander.

    Tom Brady and the New England Patriots EXONERATED!!!!

  41. In ten years, and forever, when anyone debates the greatest QB of all time, people will mention names.

    Brady’s name will be offered up, and the immediate response will be “yeah, but…”
    Then the conversation will quickly move on to the rest of the list, and the debate will go from there without Brady included. (The only time he will remain in the discussion is when it is dominated by residents of CT and north.)

    It’s a sad thing, but this is the legacy Brady and the Patriots have created. He SHOULD be in that discussion until the end. He won’t be.

    Instead people will always speculate as to what else they (Brady and Bill) got away with.

  42. limakey says:
    Sep 3, 2015 6:57 PM
    Brady will never be exhorated nor should he be. I think the judge made some calls he shouldn’t have, but he is the judge. The NFL will win on appeal.

    No the NFL won’t win the appeal. When you lose the first round it’s even harder to win , it only happens in the NY court 7% of the time.

  43. Doesn’t much matter to me if he’s “exonerated” or not, as long as he doesn’t get suspended. The NFL’s case was based on mis- and disinformation, and Goodell’s position as supreme arbiter and commissioner makes it materially impossible for him to be objective.

  44. Goodell (or more likely his lawyers) just won’t learn! The NFL can engage the NFLPA to develop a handbook and penalties – effectively a set of negotiated standards. Instead, they want to keep the focus on the inane legal process (and billable hours) to defend his indefensible absolute power.

    And if the NFL thinks this is going to fade as it works its way through the appeals process – wait until the Patriots do not get their draft choices back! The 2016 “off season” premier event of the draft will become a zoo with Goodell trying to tame the angry fans. It will be like last year on steroids. Not a good look for the NFL. It could ruin the draft (remember the Chicago presidential nomination in 1968?). I wonder what the old timers like the Rooneys, Maras, Jerry Jones, etc. will feel when they are booed.

    Maybe a boycott of stadium attendance or specific NFL sponsors would convince the owners that this issue has struck a chord with many who believe that due process requires an objective evaluation of all facts.

  45. Part of Judge Berman’s decision was based on the fact that the NFL refused to allow the NFLPA to question Pash, and wouldn’t turn over their notes from the appeal. Several have suggested that if only the NFL had relented on these issues, the outcome would have favored the NFL.
    there is a reason the NFL wouldn’t give in on these issues. They would’ve made The NFL look even worse, and this judgement would’ve been even more of a slam dunk.

  46. In America one is exonerated of any charge until found guilty. And he wasn’t; his exoneration continues.

  47. Tom Brady was not exonerated by the judge.

    He was exonerated by physics, which proves that if the NFL’s measurements are correct, no air was let out of the footballs after their inspection.

  48. It was never about that – it was about having Brady on the field, especially opening night the year after winning the Super Bowl. I think everyone admits the whole investigation was a mess, so whatever opinion people had going is probably unchanged.
    It’s amazing to me the lack of critical thinking people have – do you talk about cheating when talking about the Elway SB’s? Broncos got in big trouble for cheating then. This stuff won’t even be a blip on the radar once it’s all said and done, especially if Brady wins another Super Bow.

  49. One thing in his glee to report on Roger Goodell’s loss, Florio fails to inform you New England sycophants is that Goodell works for the owners, all of the owners, you now have 31 pissed off billionares, who are sick of the Cheating Patriots, sick of the phoniness of Robert Kraft, hating and wanting to ban the ultimate cheating machine in Belichek, and the front man, with his pretty little face, and unbelievable arrogance of Brady. The war has just begun, and these 31 are all out to humiliate the cheaters now.

  50. That’s fair. It was clear from the start that Berman could only rule on the appeal hearing. Brady’s innocence or guilt was not on trial. Only the process.

    However, since the process that found him guilty has now been legally determined as unfair and the punishment has been determined to be unfair, it is reasonable to say that Brady is still innocent until proven guilty.

    The only reason anyone thinks he is guilty is because Goodell said so basically. If that doesn’t seem like McCarthism I don’t know what would.

  51. jerrahsucks says:
    Sep 3, 2015 7:33 PM
    One thing in his glee to report on Roger Goodell’s loss, Florio fails to inform you New England sycophants is that Goodell works for the owners, all of the owners, you now have 31 pissed off billionares, who are sick of the Cheating Patriots, sick of the phoniness of Robert Kraft, hating and wanting to ban the ultimate cheating machine in Belichek, and the front man, with his pretty little face, and unbelievable arrogance of Brady. The war has just begun, and these 31 are all out to humiliate the cheaters now.

    Just so you know, every team and owner tries to win. Most just suck at it. If they care about the Patriots they are fools. They generally play them once or twice a year and the Patriots have won one Super Bowl in a decade. They should try to beat the team they are facing in a week.

  52. The hate is amazing. I bask in its glow because I know it will wane eventually. This was a fine, nothing more, and GODdell decided to wield Thor’s hammer and found it to be much too heavy. Suck it haters and nfl officials. Love it!!!!! Da mi cabeza, Hijo de putas.

  53. I said it before, Pats fans that are celebrating–how do you explain to young Pats fans that you’re happy that their favorite player got away with cheating and then lying about it???

    You can’t without being a hypocrite—unless you are teaching them that it’s ok to cheat and lie as long as you don’t get caught.

  54. 6ball says:
    Sep 3, 2015 6:17 PM
    My understanding was that the case before Judge Berman was strictly about process, and he found the process unfair. He was never asked about ” dorito dink ” and other such sideshows.
    Your understanding was incorrect then.

    The bottom line was no precedent for suspensions for this particular type of cheating.

    He also agreed Brady was covering up but Favre precedent means fine.


  55. 6ball says:
    Sep 3, 2015 6:17 PM
    My understanding was that the case before Judge Berman was strictly about process, and he found the process unfair. He was never asked about ” dorito dink ” and other such sideshows.
    Your understanding was incorrect then.

    The bottom line was no precedent for suspensions for this particular type of cheating.

    He also agreed Brady was covering up but Favre precedent means fine.


    The answer is both, and then some. He says the Wells report wasn’t independent, so Brady wasn’t given a fair shake. That doesn’t mean Brady did or didn’t cheat, but the only supposed evidence against him was basically called junk by the judge.
    He also says the investigation into it was totally unprecedented (see the whole Jets employee caught in the act doing the same thing and no one being suspended, let alone even investigated on the team), along with the punishment (citing Favre and some others)

    All in all, it’s not getting off on some minor technicality when the judge calls the whole process garbage. Just got finished reading the ruling and it is delightful.

    Anyway, on to Week 1 – Go Pats!

  56. I’ve never doubted Brady asked for the balls to be adjusted to his specifications. From what’s emerged in the aftermath of the playoffs, that’s common practice among quarterbacks. Aaron Rodgers even joked about it during a press conference. But why were Brady and the Patriots scapegoated by the league? Why was a minor issue allowed to become a major scandal tainting the AFC Championship and the Super Bowl? Why would a commissioner who claims such concern for the “integrity of the shield” work so hard to tarnish the NFL’s image?

    I’m glad my Steelers will face Brady on opening night. May the best team win. But I won’t celebrate until Goodell is out of the league.

  57. nevyn49 says:
    Sep 3, 2015 6:03 PM

    The details don’t matter to pats fans.

    You can tell this by the number of them still droning on about Aaron Rodgers, when what he said was in no way a rule violation.

    Knowingly playing with footballs that are inflated to more than what the rules allow, in order to gain an advantage, is not a rule violation?

    Okay, cheater.

  58. At the end of the day, the truth might never be known, unless Brady really did it and confesses on his deathbed in 2064 or so.

  59. @nevyn49 What details? You’ve missed the whole point! There were NEVER ANY DETAILS THAT POINTED THE FINGER AT BRADY…

    The NFL admitted in court they had no real evidence. Read the transcripts.

    There are the trolls, and then there is someone like you, whose such a pathetic fan they pin all their hopes on maybe the other guy was cheating.

    I’d rather read from the trolls…

  60. Free a level and fair playing field.

    Join up with Barry Bonds Brady. Enjoy your next ten years tied up in court. You took 3 months to read the Wells report and get back to us. This could have been wrapped up long ago.

  61. The bottom line should have been the fact the CBA gives the commissioner the authority to do what he did – the judge basically ignored the negotiated CBA and his decision gutted it – this will likely open up an entire new can of worms for the NFL, NFLPA, and the owners – if it survives the appeal.

  62. There is a difference between having the power to do something, and legitimate use of the power to do something.

    If the NFL doesn’t have the power to suspend Brady, then it doesn’t have the power to suspend anyone.

  63. Exactly! All this crying about draft picks and fines and how Kraft should go after Goodell is stupid as hell. The Patriots CLEARLY CHEATED this Brady case was about unfair punishment FOR cheating not whether they he or the Patriots cheated Which they DID..

    Some seriously alarmingly dense people on here!

  64. The bottom line should have been the fact the CBA gives the commissioner the authority to do what he did – the judge basically ignored the negotiated CBA and his decision gutted it – this will likely open up an entire new can of worms for the NFL, NFLPA, and the owners – if it survives the appeal.
    He didn’t gut the CBA. He told the NFL that they acted outside the CBA (notice) and violated Federal law regulating arbitrators (partiality).

    It will survive appeal.

  65. smasonsmith says:
    Sep 3, 2015 9:40 PM
    He didn’t gut the CBA. He told the NFL that they acted outside the CBA (notice) and violated Federal law regulating arbitrators (partiality).

    It will survive appeal.

    Hey people, google “arbitrators” and read up on what their responsibilities are. The CBA agrees to let the commissioner to sit as an arbitrator during the appeals process. He has to follow the laws and guidelines that have been set forth by the Feds. Berman could see that Goodell did not.

  66. Hey, it’s not like PED’s,getting in a bar fight,beating his kid,punching his wife, or killing someone.
    it’s air pressure.
    and Roger was generally aware of the sting.

  67. Hardy, Rice and Peterson committed crimes. That’s the difference.
    And yes, Brady wasn’t exonerated. Why? Because that wasn’t Judge Berman’s job. The arrogant NFL, in its haste to file the case before the union did in Minnesota; The NFL was the plaintiff. So, the judge’s job was to rule whether or not the NFL had the right to punish a player, in this case, Tom Brady, under Rule 46. If you read the report – which most fans outside of NE failed to do , such as the Wells Report, the Court Filing or any of the other documents beyond the headlines planted with ESPN, the NFL’ s mouthpiece – you would have clearly seen what Judge Berman did that the charges against “Mr. Brady” lacked fundamental fairness.
    BTW. While it wasn’t his job to rule on TB12’s guilt or innocence, it was pretty clear where he stood on that. BUT, of course, you have had to read his judgement to see that.

  68. Anyone with an ounce of sense of logic would know pats didn’t doctor the balls.

    “Deflater ” can’t possibly mean deflating footballs as it implies something highly impossible.

    “Needle ” was more likely used when ref over inflate footballs.

  69. Did anyone here actually read the 40 page decision by Judge Berman and the transcripts of the trial? The judge clearly was of the opinion that this was all a lot of hogwash. The investigation was not independent. What does that mean? It means those conducting the investigation were hired by the NFL and were biased toward the NFL. That the conclusions of the investigation cannot be relied on.

    He said that the NFL actually obstructed the investigation, by withholding evidence and by refusing to allow Nash to be cross examined, because Nash would have information about whether the investigation was independent or not. Sorry, but there is a reason that an independent investigation is important. It’s because everything that would come out of an investigation that was not, is tainted. You can’t believe or rely on anything they said.

    The scientists who have disputed the findings of this non independent investigation, on the other hand have been independent, with no horse in the race, and they came to the conclusion that no on tampered with the balls.

    Goodell was caught in a lie by a Washington Post reporter. He misrepresented what Brady said in a ‘closed to the public’ appeal that Goodell, I’m sure thought would never become public. He told the reporter the exact opposite of what Brady really said. Do you realize how serious that is, that he lied to the media about what Brady’s testimony was?

    The NFL intentionally leaked false info to the media about the 2PSI of the footballs.

    No one deflated the balls. Goodell and the NFL lied, misrepresented, and manipulated the entire situation to make it appear that the Patriots were guilty.

    This is not new information. So, for anyone to be saying today….well, Brady was not exonerated. Sorry, Brady has been exonerated for me, for months now. There’s always going to be a portion of fans, who will refuse to look objectively at everything that has happened, that’s just a fact of life. Deflategate is over as far as I’m concerned and the rest of the league can think anything they want. Their non independent, non objective, dishonest opinions are not my concern.

  70. There is this common assertion amongst the haters and many in the media that ONLY Patriots fans are on the side of NE and Brady. This is entirely incorrect.

    I’m not a Patriots fan but I can see very clearly what a biased snowjob this was from day one. We only need to look at every other equipment violation in recent years that was greeted with a warning by the NFL. Goodell, Kensil and other former Jets employees have an ax to grind with the Patriots. Which has led to this never ending nonsense.

    Any other team would’ve gotten a warning, based on Goodell’s actions the last few years.

  71. The NFL doesn’t have the power to properly punish the organization and players that use unfair practices to gain an advantage? (read cheating here)… heck might just fuel the fire for said organization to continue its cheating culture, why not? apparently there are very little consequences.

    If the NFL “can’t” suspend Brady perhaps they should just strip any wins associated with the unfair advantage involved, up to and including the SB.

  72. Brady exonerated?
    The NFL was not fair and honest.
    Goodell would not permit Brady’s team to question the accusers and would not let them see the “independent” investigator’s notes.

    This is absolutely unfair.

    Shouldn’t this conversation be framed around “Why did Goodell lie and try too frame Tom Brady”

    Wouldn’t that be more accurate?

  73. It’s clear from the ruling that the NFL could have gotten away with it if it played its cards better but that doesn’t mean Berman agreed with the finding of guilt either. He likely stayed far from that so his ruling would hold up on appeal. Nonetheless he frequently put “independent” and “allegedly” in quotes and even bolded this tidbit from the Wells Report:

    The Wells Report acknowledged that “[o]ur scientific consultants informed us that the data alone did not provide a basis for them to determine with absolute certainty whether there was or was not tampering, as the analysis of such data is ultimately dependent upon assumptions and information that is uncertain.” Id. at 131 (emphasis added).

  74. I would further add about the Wells Report, that coming up with no certainty on the science, Wells mixed in some random text messages, none of them referring to the AFC Championship game (the most noted one coming in the offseason) yet Wells never investigated anything but that game day.

  75. Only an idiot would or could ever say Brady was exonerated
    Only an idiot would or could ever say Brady was guilty

    “Probable” doesn’t mean guilty or innocent. Grow up and move on.

  76. The Judge used the example of a union shop in his decision, by doing this it allowed him to explain his decision that Brady didn’t know the consequences of his actions because they weren’t clearly spelled out in the collective bargain agreement. Most union shops have codes of conduct and rules and the consequences for those rules being violated clearly written out and agreed upon by the company and the union. The NFLPA has argued from day one that Goodell was making up his own discipline as he went along. I personally believe this is a weak argument for the Judge to use because he clearly isn’t holding the Union responsible for not having these rules clearly defined and the punishments clearly defined for breaking them before the contract was ratified. Goodell on the other hand is guilty because he should know that these situations where rules are violated and there is no clear discipline laid out has to be agreed upon collectively with the Union. At some point the courts need to stay out of it, I still believe the decision to reverse the suspension will be shot down in the appeals phase. The Judge stuck his neck out. What happens Pats fans if this decision comes in dec? The league is going to sit Brady and point out to the next phase in the legal case NFLPA appeal to the appeal that they didn’t ask for a injuction to keep Brady from playing so why should the NFLPA ask for a stay on his suspension while they wait for an appeal on the appeal. Mess.

  77. We may want to watch this year what happens when a player hits Brady in the head or knees and the league looks at the film to determine whether or not to fine the offender.

    My bet is they will use the higher standard, proof beyond a reasonable doubt, to determine this. There are at least 13 teams that will decide whether or not Brady is a cheater. They get to vote on the field of play not is a courtroom.

  78. Again on page 73 of the Wells’ report the Colts’ balls do not have the pressure that that they did to start the game or even at half time.The thesis of the report is that this cannot happen unless air is let out.There was no air let out of any ball.The report introduces the logo fiction to make the data of Colts’ balls look better than it is.If Walt Anderson cannot remember if he used a straight needle or a bent needle to gauge the balls he should never be allowed to officiate another game.
    Yes folks the Wells’ report is proof that that there was no crime.Now just what is it that Brady is guilty of?

  79. dank 16. “Everyone outside of NE wants to think they know it. There, I fixed it for you.

    What we do know is that Brady and Manning went to the league and asked that each team be given permission to prepare the balls for the game. We also know that several quarterbacks, like Aaron Rodgers, have come out and stated publicly their preference for how they prefer the balls.
    We also know that the league never bothered to make that an issue.
    Further, we know that TB12 preferred the balls at the lower end – 12.5psi.
    We know that. until Tensil’s sting operation based upon a tip to the Colts from the Ravens, that no one cared one iota about the inflation of the footballs. And, if there was an issue where one team had a suspicion about another, the league would warn them ahead of time to stop whatever it was. In fact, in a game between the Vikings and Jaguars, it was shown on TV that both teams used the heaters to warm up the balls – just as leaving them out in the cold would do.
    We know that Wells interviewed the two ball boys four time and Tom Brady for at least six hours. Don’t you think, based upon the way they twisted and re-worded information and even lied about things in the report, that if they had anything on them, it would have been in the report. The two ball boys turned their telephones over to Wells and you may recall – IF YOU READ THE REPORT – Wells went so far as to include a message between Jastremski and his mother (which had NOTHING to do with the issue) in the report. But there was nothing about his long interrogation with Brady. Do you think that he interviewed the two ball boys together. No, he did it separately. If someone with Wells experience as an investigator could have gotten something by playing them against each other, wouldn’t it have been in the report? Don’t you also think that he would have asked all of them, “Did you do this?” We also know that when Tom Brady appeared before Adolph Goodell, he was sworn in under oath, just as if he were in a court of law – and subject to the same penalties. He said that neither he nor anyone in the Patriots organization had done anything illegal to the footballs.
    Now if I worked for the Patriots and I new that Tom Brady liked the footballs at the lower LEGAL end – 12.5psi. and it was my job to make sure that they were. What do you suppose my nickname might be?????????????????????????

    Fans of other teams should be mad, but that anger should be directed at Roger Goodell and the NFL leadership, because you can accuse TB12 all you want, but the only ONE we know lied and was found guilty was Roger Goodell and the NFL legal team.

  80. Hopefully, this will lead to a change in how punishments are determined in the NFL. I think it was always an issue that one man handled the investigation, and the penalties without having to consult with anyone. The best solution for me would be having a panel made up of NFLPA members and owners determine punishments. Goodell has shown repeatedly that he cant be trusted to make fair, intelligent decisions.

  81. Brady and OJ now have something in common,neither was exonerated and never will be. the fact they can hold in the lie for life makes them special people.

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