The #DeflateGate scandal prompted the NFL not to test halftime and postgame PSI levels for all footballs in every game, but to implement a random procedure for testing footballs throughout the season.
That random procedure has arrived in New England for the first time.
Via CSNNE.com, NFL Network producer Lisa Kraus Edwards reports that the NFL will measure PSI levels before the game, at halftime, and after the game.
The measurement of football air pressure is a given before every game. The difference here comes from the plan to test the footballs at both halftime and at postgame. Because the process is supposed to be random, the NFL probably isn’t thrilled that one of its employees let the cat out of the bag; for a random process to be truly random, the teams involved shouldn’t know about the plan to test the PSI during and after the game. In this case, the report emerged before kickoff.
“At designated games, selected at random, the game balls used in the first half will be collected by the [kicking ball coordinator] at halftime, and the League’s Security Representative will escort the KBC with the footballs to the Officials’ Locker room,” an August 2015 memo from the league explained. “During halftime, each game ball for both teams will be inspected in the locker room by designated members of the officiating and security crews, and the PSI results will be measured and recorded. Once measured, those game balls will then be secured and removed from play. . . . At the end of any randomly selected game, the [kicking ball coordinator] will return the footballs to the Officials’ Locker Room where all game balls from each team will be inspected and the results will be recorded.”
It’s unclear how often PSI measurements have been taken this year, and the league has declined to acknowledge whether the PSI measurements will be released publicly. Which has caused some to think that the league will release the numbers if they support the notion that the Patriots cheated during the AFC title game — and that the league never will disclose the numbers if they undermine the scientific findings of the Wells report.