Full disclosure, I am a Patriots fan. Not a fan boy or a bandwagonner, I am 52 and a life long resident of Mass. And I actually thought they were “guilty” at first.
It blows my mind how big this thing got but here’s my take, thanks for reading.
I have read more about the “Deflate-gate” scandal/conspiracy theory/made for TV drama then I care to admit. I read numerous sports related sites,and partake in the discussions on the sites that have them. I was fully invested in this thing! Initially, I figured the Patriots were probably up to something. I also really didn’t care very much. I had no idea there was even a rule about how much air was supposed to be in the footballs. I did remember the change in 2006 (or so) when teams (see: QBs) were allowed to prep and supply their own footballs. Tom Brady and his long time rival Peyton Manning were instrumental in this change of football protocol. The basis of the change was because up until that point, the league supplied brand new footballs for both teams. Brand new footballs are pretty slick and feel hard. The league, wanting more offense (to appease the “new” NFL fans who were mostly in it for the fantasy football aspect imo) allowed the teams to break their own balls in however they wanted too. The footballs would have to pass a pre-game “inspection” including (as we all now know) a “PSI”check. Those footballs had better be between 12.5 and 13.5 PSI! The reason for this, of course, is that’s what it says on the “instructions” that come with a brand new Wilson NFL football: “For best results inflate to 12.5-13.5 PSI” One question I had was if Brady wanted his footballs under the allowed limit,if he liked them “Soft” or what ever why not ask for that when they changed the rules on ball prep? Even if that became something he preferred or needed later in his career, he still could have just asked…I mean if it meant so much to him to have the balls a liitle lower(remember we are talking minute amounts of air here) he’d really have some evil scheme before he’d just ask? For some reason that’s hard to believe.
Especially give how many new rules are influenced by (or because of) the Patriots.
Anyway I have seen and read a lot of stories on this. I have read a lot of “comments” from fans on both sides (there isn’t much middle ground with this team, it seems you’re either a fan or you want them forever banished from the world) As previously stated, I had them”guilty” at first. Of course I know now that the the things that made me think that way were mostly untrue. The “11 of 12 balls….2 pounds under”. The Brady presser…That seemed a little awkward but with hindsight we know he gave that presser under the impression someone took “2 pounds” of air out of the footballs…If the narrative at the time of that presser was “So Tom,the balls may or may not have been a puff of air low,depending on whether or not 1 of the NFL’s longest tenured officials has any of his memory left, did you have anything to do with it?” Tom probably laughs and asks if that’s a joke, There’s a couple bits of circumstantial evidence that indeed look a little bad but there’s a lot more that points to nothing more than a quick squeeze of the footballs in the john to make sure they weren’t “balloons”. Big game, a little bit of rain…Earlier that year, in a home game vs the Jets most of the balls were almost 16 PSI and Brady was pretty ticked off.
Besides the reasons I already stated above- it doesnt really make much sense to have some scheme to take a puff of air out of some of the balls when you could just ask permission, and there most likely was no air taken out of the balls- below is another big point in Brady’s favor.
he (Brady) reviewed a highlighted copy of the provision of the Playing Rules that addressed inflation of footballs; and he instructed the equipment staff to present a copy of the rule to the game officials. On the day of the AFC Championship Game, Mr. McNally told referee Walt Anderson that Mr. Brady wanted the balls inflated to a pressure of 12.5 psi. He told the investigators that “Tom … always has me pass a message to the Official’s [sic] that he likes the balls at the minimum permissible PSI of 12.5. … I know this is what Tom wants, and I have been personally told by him of the ball weight preference.”
It seems pretty clear to me that Brady was very clear about wanting the balls at 12.5.
Could it be made any clearer? “Here is the rule, here is what I want which is within the rules”. Pretty clear,no? In a real court that is what clears Brady. That is what would point to either a rogue official or “ball boy” since it’s pretty clear what Brady actually wants, but of course the real culprit was Mother Nature.
And Goodell actually used this against Brady! Because Brady wanted(insisted actually) them at the “lowest permissable” PSI that means he wanted them lower than that? It is also hard to believe Brady would want anyone messing with the footballs he hand selected and approved after said approval.
But with how the NFL just wouldn’t give up on this silly thing I have to wonder if it really was a “Sting”. But the sting I am curious about is different than anything I’ve seen posted anywhere. Again because the NFL just kept doubling down, breaking out all the stops to Win this thing, I do wonder if maybe the balls were originally over inflated again,by the league, by a rogue official…whoever did it for that Jets game. What if somebody tried to mess with Brady again, give him “balloons” and “the deflator” simply brought them back down to legal? It’s not like the league could say “We know they tampered after inspection because we had the balls set at 16 PSI!”
Just seems like there has to be some reason the league hired people and firms (Wells,Exponent) known to get the results their client wants for this case. So much spin and lies,doctoring the test results and even the photo of the 2 gauges
but they tried to make them appear similar
They even lied and said Brady and the NFLPA wanted the transcripts “sealed”. We found out when it went to court that it was in fact the NFL that didnt want the public to see the transcripts. I wonder why?
So if you disagree that’s fine but I’d like to know 2 things. 1) Did you actually read the part about Brady making it very clear he wanted the officials to make sure the balls were at 12.5 PSI?
and 2) Do you also think the Colts cheated in that game? No matter which gauge you go by all 4 of their footballs that got tested had “lost air”
I’ll hang up and listen…Go Pats!