Plenty of confusion still lingers regarding the status of Patriots employees John Jastremski and Jim McNally, regarding both how their suspensions happened and whether the team has asked that the suspensions end.
As to the initiation of the suspensions, some have reported that the NFL asked the Patriots to suspend the men whose text messages at a minimum raised real questions regarding whether they were deflating footballs. On Tuesday, Commissioner Roger Goodell told ESPN Radio’s Mike & Mike in the Morning that the league “absolutely” did not make that request, and that the Patriots decided to suspend the men.
It could be a matter of semantics, with the Patriots taking action that they believed the NFL wanted them to take in the aftermath of the release of the Ted Wells report. Or perhaps the Patriots decided on their own that imposing the suspensions would secure special consideration for quarterback Tom Brady — in the same way that owner Robert Kraft believed the team’s decision not to appeal the punishment imposed against it would potentially help Brady.
As to the whether and when the suspensions will end, the NFL tells PFT that the Patriots have not yet asked for either guy to be reinstated. That meshes with a statement made by NFL executive V.P. of football operations Troy Vincent during a Monday Twitter chat: “We have not heard from the Patriots in regards to their 2 employees.”
But it’s one thing for the league’s P.R. department to answer a question from the media; it’s another for Vincent to comment on an internal league matter during a social media question and answer.
Separately, it’s unknown whether the Patriots want to re-employ either of the two men, especially since the Wells investigation generated text messages in which McNally expressed a high degree of anger, with profanity, at quarterback Tom Brady.