The ‘Two Minutes Hate’ of Tom Brady

Exclusive: New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady may lose his day in court since the NFL maneuvered “Deflategate” into a corporate-friendly venue in Manhattan possibly sparing the NFL from explaining why rival owners were allowed to intervene to push harsh penalties for Brady and the Patriots, says Robert Parry.

By Robert Parry

Now that the National Football League has arranged for a corporate-friendly court in Manhattan to hear a federal lawsuit brought by suspended New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady and the court has made clear it doesn’t want a full-scale trial, only a negotiated settlement we may never know what really happened in the overblown “Deflategate” controversy.

But how this controversy has been handled by the NFL, the mainstream media and much of the American public is instructive regarding what’s gone wrong in this country’s approach toward information and evidence. We are now routinely manipulated into Orwellian “Two Minutes Hate” sessions directed at designated “villains,” whether Iraq’s Saddam Hussein, Russia’s Vladimir Putin or the Patriots’ Tom Brady.

New England Patriot quarterback Tom Brady.

New England Patriot quarterback Tom Brady.

This mob-like process allows for remarkably little dissent or skepticism. We are given one-sided stories from entities whose honesty and integrity we should doubt, whether the U.S. government, the mainstream media or the NFL. But we join, nevertheless, in a collective unleashing of hate toward the target, casting aside facts and fairness for the fun of some ritualistic, communal fury.

We saw where the 1984-like “Two Minutes Hate” session got us regarding Saddam Hussein and his treacherous hiding of WMD. And we are currently living with the increased danger of thermo-nuclear war because our “Two Minutes Hate” session toward Putin has lasted for two years.

Obviously, the Brady case is less consequential but perhaps even more illustrative because Brady was until this controversy a respectable American citizen, the 199th pick in the 2000 NFL Draft, considered a poor athlete who couldn’t make it in professional football but who defied his skeptics and worked his way up to the highest levels of his profession, taking his team to six Super Bowls and winning four.

But Brady’s success earned not just plaudits from admirers but animosity from many rival fans and, more significantly, from rival teams’ owners, a pack of highly ambitious men who have invested huge sums in their franchises and who hate to lose.

If we step back for a moment, we would realize that almost everything that we have heard about the “Deflategate” saga has been from the NFL’s side of the story, reflecting the clear interests of the rival owners who have bristled over the Patriots’ and Brady’s dominance of the league for the past 15 years.

Indeed, an alternative way to view this “scandal” is that these rival owners tired of losing to the Patriots and to Brady are trying to rig the upcoming season by barring Brady from four games and then to handicap the team into the future by stripping it of first- and fourth-round draft picks.

You might have thought that these rival owners would have been excluded from Brady’s case, much as Patriots owner Robert Kraft was. But the direct role of these rival owners in pressing for Brady’s four-game suspension was reported (in passing) by ESPN and acknowledged (in a backhand way) by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell’s 20-page report rejecting Brady’s appeal.

In the report, Goodell referenced input from the NFL’s Management Council in taking positions hostile to Brady. The Management Council consists of team owners who not only are tired of losing to the Patriots but hold the strings to Goodell’s $35 million salary.

Two Prosecutors’ Briefs

So, perhaps not surprisingly, what the NFL has produced are two prosecutors’ briefs, one by outside counsel Ted Wells and one by Goodell. However, rather than treat these accusations as just one side of the story, the mainstream media ,from The New York Times to ESPN has treated these tendentious reports as gospel truth and downplayed or mocked follow-up denials by Brady and the Patriots.

The federal court case offered Brady his one chance to move from playing defense to offense. But the NFL preempted the possibility of Brady’s case being heard in a relatively sympathetic venue and instead rushed to file first in a Manhattan court considered favorable to management.

If not for the waves of hatred directed toward Brady, some Americans might wonder why the NFL is going to such lengths to prevent Brady from getting a relatively fair hearing. What are the questions that Brady’s lawyers might have asked if they had a chance, which they may not now? Here are a few areas of vulnerability in the NFL’s case:

Problems with the first predicate. According to the official narrative of Deflategate, the Indianapolis Colts came to suspect that the Patriots were deflating footballs after the Colts intercepted two of Brady’s passes during a nationally televised game on Nov. 16, 2014, which the Patriots won 42-20, continuing their lopsided dominance of the Colts. But there are gaps in the Colts’ story.

First, the game was played at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, meaning it was a Colts’ home game and as we have learned from the Deflategate record, the home team controls both teams’ footballs after they are inspected by the referees before the game. A home-team employee carries them to the field, meaning that any tampering by the Patriots would have had to occur in front of tens of thousands of people and hundreds of cameras, but no one has presented such evidence.

Secondly, neither of the NFL’s two reports indicates exactly what the Colts learned about those intercepted footballs or whether they were tested. The Colts play in a domed stadium so none of the environmental effects that can naturally reduce the air pressure would have been present. But the existing record doesn’t show what the air pressure supposedly was, if the Colts checked.

Thirdly, Jim McNally, the Patriots’ game-day employee alleged to be the “deflator,” doesn’t travel with the team. So, presumably, somebody else would have had to deflate the balls. Yet, the reports offer no suggestions regarding how that was supposed to work.

That leaves another possibility: that the Colts, having lost badly to the Patriots in November, were looking for some creative gamesmanship that might give them hope for the rematch in the AFC Championship game in Foxborough, Massachusetts, on Jan. 18, 2015. So, accuse the Patriots of deflating footballs, cause lots of confusion and get into Brady’s head.

Problems with the second predicate. According to the NFL’s two reports, the Colts pressed their concern during the first half of the championship game after intercepting another Brady pass and checking its air pressure, which was indeed under the 12.5 pounds per square inch lowest standard for NFL games. But scientists later noted that the psi was in the range expected by the natural effect of a ball losing pressure in the cold temperatures that night in Foxborough.

In other words, the second predicate for the investigation was based on ignorance of the Ideal Gas Law. But the Colts’ complaint prompted a chaotic halftime examination of the Patriots’ footballs, which were found to be below the 12.5 psi minimum standard. So, too, were three of the four Colts’ balls that were tested, according to the more accurate gauge used. (On the fourth ball, there was an apparent mistake in recording the numbers, and the NFL officials ran out of time and didn’t finish testing the remainder of the Colts’ footballs.)

Though the halftime examination of the footballs caused some confusion at the start of the second half, the Colts’ gambit if that’s what it was failed to shake Brady and the Patriots who went on to win the game, 45-7.

But the halftime examination began a flurry of reports about the Patriots possibly cheating by using underinflated footballs. The NFL then added to the furor by sending the Patriots a letter announcing an investigation with false information, including overstating how low the levels of psi were in the Patriots’ balls and announcing that none of the Colts’ balls had tested below the minimum.

Those false NFL claims eventually were retracted in the Wells report months later, but the inaccuracies were allowed to seep into the news media and helped create a hostile climate toward Brady and the Patriots during the two-week run-up to the Super Bowl, which the Patriots also won.

McNally’s behavior. A key point in both Wells’ report and Goodell’s report was the supposedly suspicious actions of McNally, the Patriots’ game-day employee who was responsible for conveying the footballs for both teams from the referees to the field and who had the task of informing the referees that Brady preferred his footballs deflated to the low end of the permissible levels, 12.5 psi.

Wells and Goodell noted that in other games, McNally and the footballs were under the supervision of an NFL referee after they were checked, but that in the AFC Championship game, he carried the footballs down to the field without a specific order to do so. He also stopped briefly in a single-toilet bathroom en route to the field for what McNally said was a quick chance to urinate but Wells and Goodell suspect was a chance to deflate the Patriots’ footballs.

But there are two problems with the NFL’s depiction of these events. First, neither the Wells report nor the Goodell report notes the highly unusual circumstances preceding the AFC Championship game. Normally, football games are set to start at a certain time and do so, even in the playoffs when there is a half-hour or so break between the end of one game and the start of the next.

However, on Jan. 18, the NFC Championship game went into overtime, forcing a delay in the start of the AFC game. Then, when the NFC game ended abruptly with a Seattle Seahawks touchdown, there was confusion and haste in the referees lounge about getting everyone and everything down to the field. McNally said he took that command as his order to lug the two bags of footballs to the field.

In other words, whether or not McNally should have waited for a referee to accompany him or not, the situation was highly unusual. There have been very few times in NFL history when the start of a championship game was delayed because another championship game had gone into overtime. That context is important but is left out of both NFL reports, all the better to make McNally’s behavior look especially suspicious.

A second problem for the NFL is its assertion that McNally was normally supervised by an NFL official after the balls were check by the head referee. If that’s true, then it wouldn’t seem possible that he routinely deflated footballs en route to the field.

Bolstering that point was the fact that Brady complained to equipment assistant John Jastremski after an October 2014 game against the New York Jets when the referees illegally over-inflated the footballs and McNally failed in his assignment to get the refs to deflate them to the 12.5 psi level that Brady preferred.

When Jastremski raised Brady’s complaint with McNally, you might have expected his text messages to explain why he had not deflated the balls himself surreptitiously, if he were part of such a scheme. But he didn’t make any such reference. He simply suggested that Brady should expect even worse over-inflation in the next game.

Role of rival owners. If Brady were allowed to go on the offensive with an investigation of the NFL’s investigation, an interesting line of questioning would be exactly how the rival owners weighed in to pressure Goodell to issue extremely harsh penalties to both Brady and the Patriots.

Though the Colts’ maneuvers at the end of the first half in the AFC Championship game failed to disrupt the Patriots’ game plan, the ensuing public furor over Deflategate offered a potential for other team owners to severely damage the Patriots’ 2015 season and to hobble them in future years by taking away two prime draft picks.

One might assume that Goodell would have shielded the investigation from such pressures, but he didn’t. His own report and ESPN disclosed that rival owners were pressing for a hard line against Brady, with the NFL Management Council even intervening to advise Goodell how he should evaluate certain pieces of evidence.

Thus, what may have begun as a case of clever gamesmanship by the Colts may end up as an assault on the competitive integrity of the NFL. It would surely be interesting to see how Goodell on the witness stand would respond to questions of bias. But it appears that the NFL’s preemptive move to locate the case before a corporate-friendly Manhattan judge may steal from Brady his day in court.

[For more on this topic, see Consortiumnews.com’s “Holes in NFL’s ‘Deflategate’ Report”;  “Why Write about NFL’s ‘Deflategate’”; “Tom Brady and Theoretical Crime”; “NFL’s Deflategate Findings ‘Unreliable’”; and “The Tom Brady Railroad”]

Investigative reporter Robert Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories for The Associated Press and Newsweek in the 1980s. You can buy his latest book, America’s Stolen Narrative, either in print here or as an e-book (from Amazon and barnesandnoble.com). You also can order Robert Parry’s trilogy on the Bush Family and its connections to various right-wing operatives for only $34. The trilogy includes America’s Stolen Narrative. For details on this offer, click here.

29 comments for “The ‘Two Minutes Hate’ of Tom Brady

  1. tony
    August 11, 2015 at 23:17

    The anointed one destroyed his phone

  2. Gregory Kruse
    August 3, 2015 at 22:56

    I’ve been reading these posts for some weeks, and I think you are on to something. Our politics have become so contentious that the minority will soon fear for its life. Sports have become so politically contentious that players will fear for their jobs. In the end, most of us will fear for our jobs and our lives as fascism makes its rounds again.

  3. Steve
    August 3, 2015 at 15:41

    An innocent man and team are going to be hanged!! ESPN deserves part of the blame. The NFL leak of 11 of 12 underinflated footballs (not true) believed and broadcast by Chris Mortensen with one of them 10.1 psi (not true), started the ball rolling. This has never been corrected even though the NFL knew the “evidence” was all based on lies. Stephen A. Smith and lots of other ESPN media and jocks on NFL shows piled on and convicted Brady where there was no crime. There were lots of Patriot haters who loved to believe the worst. Wells report bungled and slanted everything incorrectly, and the American Enterprise Institute (and lots of physics professors) said there was no deflation (at the 95% level of confidence). The disparity in Colts vs Patriots footballs was caused by when they were tested in the 13.5 minute halftime in the warmer locker room. When officials incorrectly added air to Pats’ footballs at halftime, they were above the 13.5 legal limit after the game. Wells ignored this. All 22 balls dropped below the 12.5 psi in 48 degree wet weather because Mother Nature decries it is so, just like the apple does not fall up from the tree. The new “testing protocol” will confirm this in all cold weather games. Keep in mind that such testing has never happened before and the drop in psi confused all the science-ignorant NFL and jocks who assumed cheating. It prompted “you are in f****ng trouble” from Mike Kensil (NFL exec and former Jet – bias anyone? And you are hoping for fairness and justice?). The NFL has all the texts from Brady to the equipment guys and the other non-union Patriots (‘cause that’s the way texting works), and he gave the NFL all 28 names who received the texts he completed on the disabled phone. He invited the NFL to retrieve these texts and tried to get them himself from the “cloud” and servers without success. The NFL declined to pursue this because the truth has no place in this “investigation”. Brady removed the phone from service after his lawyers and the NFL assured him that it would not be used, but the NFL office recently leaked that Brady “destroyed” his phone as another smokescreen to deflect from their ineptness. Now the federal court case will not be seeking the truth (that there was no actual crime), but will be looking at whether this NFL power play was unfair. As this article and the Pete Rose author state, clearly Goodell is the classical blustering bully and few are standing up to him. Enjoy the hanging…..

  4. James Robinson
    August 2, 2015 at 18:39

    Tempest in a New England teapot

  5. jim stabile
    August 2, 2015 at 10:08

    Perhaps relevant and helpful facts to the less initiated reader here starts with the Indianapolis Colts GM, Alan Grigson preparing at least one letter to the NFL Offices prior to that Jan. 18th AFC Playoff Championship game alerting them to the fact that the New England Patriots play with underinflated balls.
    (Tom Brady does prefer to play with a 12.5 p.s.i. inflated sphere which is the lower end of the legal and acceptable inflation range.)
    Since any half way decent tale has a plausible beginning, middle and end let’s refer to this fact as a plausible beginning to what is known today as “Deflategate.”
    Just before half-time a Tom Brady pass is intercepted by Colt’s Linebacker (LB) D’Qwell Jackson. To Mr. Parry’s point about the the media helping a story along: Contrary to what was originally reported by Bob Kravitz of the Indianapolis Star, Mr. Jackson made no such assertion about the ball appearing soft. Mr. Jackson wanted the ball as a souvenir for his football collection. He had after all just intercepted a ball thrown by what surely would be a HoF QB….That ball was subsequently retained by the officials and has not been seen in public since..Mr. Jackson has been interviewed on this very subject more than a few times and the story remains the same.
    So if this salient fact is indeed true then it must be the referees who indeed initiated the faulty ball measurements, with different metric devices in a truncated timelimeline.
    The middle of the story obviously has to be The Wells Report, the proffered investigative body selected by the N.F.L..Rather than rehash their painful process while arriving with a “most probably” result will be left for the reader to review that 243 page report.
    And the end? Well that hasn’t been written quite yet but Mr. Parry here has certainly laid the groundwork for plausible scenarios. Se do know that Judge Berman of the Southern District Court knows his way around corp. legal barnyard. We do know that he has issued statements to both sides about the squabbling in the press and we do know that that he has ordered both parties to engage in meaningful good faith discussion before his assigned conference on August 12th forthcoming…The man seems intent upon a speedy resolution (pre-Sept. 1st) and would prefer it not to go to trial. So does this mean that some of Parry’s and Brady’s questions are never heard? I wouldn’t bet against that as neither the Membership Committee or the NFL Office have shown any such speedy inclination based on the sham of the appeals process…

  6. ex-PFC Chuck
    August 2, 2015 at 08:01

    One option Brady might contemplate, considering his age, is to retire from the game and become, on a national level, the kind of PR pain in the ass to the NFL that my home team Minnesota Vikings’ former punter was on a local level for a time. Chris Kluwe, you may recall, achieved notoriety in the league’s eyes by exercising his citizen’s right to publicly advocate on an issue that was on the 2012 general election ballot. The cause was a proposed amendment to the state constitution that would have banned gay marriage; Kluwe was vociferously against it. Worse from the team’s and the NFL”s perspective (and especially that of his special teams coach whom Kluwe called out for making homophobic comments), after the election analysts attributed the unusually high turnout of young voters that put the “No” vote over the top to Kluwe’s advocacy. His credibility with them was helped by the fact that when he wasn’t kicking footballs he played in a locally popular rock band. After the 2012 season Kluwe was eased off of the Vikings team, without being given a serious chance to compete with a rookie who had been drafted to succeed him. He signed on with the Oakland Raiders but was cut, some said under league pressure, before the start of the regular season.

    Brady could do a lot of good for the players in the league by calling BS on its socalled “judicial” processes, and their chronic treatment of their lower profile players as throw-aways. For starters he could start a program that might focus on mitigating brain damage and providing counseling and advice to young players entering the league on how to manage their lives so they don’t crash and burn emotionally and financially after their playing days are over.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chris_Kluwe

  7. Norma Price
    August 1, 2015 at 16:06

    Hi level competition between alpha males of privilege can lead to deadly and heartbreaking circumstances for the rest of us. I also put big game hunting in this category. Thank you for this story. It fits in with a lot of stuff I do not know, but suspect is true about masculinity gone wrong.

  8. Joe Tedesky
    August 1, 2015 at 16:00

    While you have made a good case, Mr. Parry, I find your point of view a hard sell up against my peers. It seems as though all of my friends have made up their mind, and their verdict is, Brady’s guilty. I truly think much of their dislike of Tom Brady starts with his good looks. The man is truly blessed on many levels, but people being who they are create grudges based upon such things as jealousy. I will tell you this, I may need to quit telling people to read what you have to say about this Brady suspension, only because by making a case against the NFL’s decision I am losing credibility to making convincingly good arguments about world affairs. I would rather hold my associates attention to such things as these political events which really effect us all, rather than waste mt time trying to defend even the good Tom Brady. Plus, as I have been telling you, Tom Brady will make NFL history this year by demonstrating what a terrific quarterback he really is. Don’t worry Bob it will all work out. You heard it here first.

    • Anonymous
      August 1, 2015 at 16:22

      Destroying evidence is itself a crime. That is the fact, even when no *criminal* indictment has [yet] been issued by a court. It is as true of Mrs. Clinton (aka Hillary) as it is of Mr. Bundsen (aka Brady).

    • Chet Roman
      August 1, 2015 at 20:13

      Nonsense. First of all his text messages are digital and are not completely erased from existence when you get a new phone, ask the NSA. Secondly, Brady offered to get copies of his text messages, an offer the league admitted was true but declined.

      You pick one item to condemn Brady but ignore a long list that Parry provides that support him. Haters only look for issues that support their bias.

    • Larry
      August 5, 2015 at 18:44

      Dear right-wing Anonymous troll, your right-wing credentials seem to extend to being jealous of Tom Brady too, given your manboy/puerile comment about his wife, and of course you don’t give a fig about facts or the truth as long as you get to stupidly vent about your shallow witless agenda. There was no evidence destroyed. All of what you call evidence is still held in data storage by Brady’s cell-phone provider. All Goodell needed to do is take it to court and ask for that evidence through the discovery process (stop me if you’re too stupid to know what I’m talking about). But do you know why Goodell didn’t take it to court? Because he’s lying and knows a good defense attorney would shred his ‘evidence’ and the Wells report to pieces. The case would be thrown out of court. Besides, the NFL leaks private player and coach information to the news media willfully and only in their favor. Only a fool would willingly turn over their privacy to Goodell. It does sound like Goodell is your kind of dictator though – he abuses power and is incapable of being honest if he thinks it would give him an advantage to cheat and lie. Goodbye.

  9. Dmail
    August 1, 2015 at 15:15

    “We are now routinely manipulated into Orwellian “Two Minutes Hate” sessions directed at designated “villains,” whether Iraq’s Saddam Hussein, Russia’s Vladimir Putin or the Patriots’ Tom Brady.”
    You could have made the same point in a more significant context: the media lynching of George Zimmerman, or going back a bit more in time the Branch Davidians, as well at countless others caught up in the War On Drugs. I’m surely not the only one who really doesn’t care about pro football.

    • Chloe M. Smith
      August 1, 2015 at 16:55

      I have always thought Brady and the Pariots should accept the decision and go on, less some wiley lawyer for the Colts convince a criminal prosecutor that criminal laws have been broken. Then, Brady’s destruction of his phone alone could result in him being found guilty of destruction of evidence and interfering in a criminal investigation, even if found not guilty of all other crimes!

      You are right in that their “record” of cheating stands against them. That too would be used to build a circumstantial criminal case against certainly the Patriots, if not Brady himself. And there are many people behind bars because of simple circumstantial evidence! Many on less circumstantial evidence than that against Brady!

    • DB
      August 7, 2015 at 16:52

      “And there are many people behind bars because of simple circumstantial evidence!”

      Yes, but it’s not just strung together by a series of very shaky inferences. What’s more, I’m sure that in those cases at a bare minimum a corpus delicti has already been established. You can’t convict someone of murder if you’re not even convinced that the “victim” is actually dead! If Brady is to be convicted of being “more than likely generally aware” that someone tampered with the footballs, shouldn’t we be sure that someone actually tampered with the footballs? There is no real evidence that ever happened!

    • August 3, 2015 at 00:54

      So do you think, then, that George Zimmerman was justified in his killing of Trayvon Martin?

    • larry
      August 5, 2015 at 18:35

      George Zimmerman, really? Do you know who is an infinitely better example of someone pilloried and attacked by the news media? It’s Trayvon Martin, the tragic victim of your malevolent ‘hero’. And you may not care about football, but you apparently have a favorite brand of sport, which I conclude is racism.

  10. shmage@pipeline.com
    August 1, 2015 at 14:26

    This is such an incredibly small-minded effusion. Not mentioned is the fact that the Patriots have an established criminal record, having admitted guilt for spying on a rival team. Also not mentioned is the “smoking gun”–the admitted fact that Brady had his cellphone destroyed on the eve of a day on which he was to be questioned (Maureen Dowd, for once, is on the mark to equate Brady’s evidence-destroting behavior with that of Mrs. Clinton in destroying her thirty thousand “personal” e-mails). Worst, though, is that in talking only about this one case in which the NFL has acted quite properly, Parry is in effect letting them off the hook for their absolutely outrageous, indeed murderous, destruction of the health and physical integrity of their (largely oppressed minority) employees.

    • jcc2455
      August 1, 2015 at 17:56

      The phone stuff is crap. I can’t stand the Patriots, but this is just another example of the NFL’s desperate twisting of the evidence, and the media’s blind acceptance of their story.

      Brady refused to allow his phone to be surrendered to the league because he and the NFLPA did not want to set a precedent. The league has refused, and the NFLPA has failed to push them, to collectively bargain a discipline process for anything other than drugs. Thus, each step in each of these farcical “investigations” sets a precedent for future investigations, and the union, quite appropriately, fights any degradation of the players’ rights. If Goodell wants to get access to players’ personal property, he can do so quite easily — sit down with the NFLPA and negotiate the terms of a progressive discipline process, which, not coincidentally, would protect the league from the epic pr disaster of wildly divergent penalties for different offenses.

      Second, the union and Brady offered to sign a release to allow his carrier to give the NFL his full phone records. As everyone knows by now, the NSA and later Congress, have forced the carriers to retain those records for purposes of “national security.” Were he serious, Goodell would have accepted the offer and gotten everything he claims he wanted – who Brady called when, all his texts, you name it. So the question of the supposed “destruction” of Brady’s phone is meaningless. The evidence from the phone was always available to the NFL, they simply preferred to use the phone as another media talking point rather than get the actual data and conduct a marginally competent investigation.

      Third, neither you nor Maureen Dowd have the faintest idea what you are talking about. The NFL is not a law enforcement agency. Their “investigation” carries no legal weight. Brady’s rights are protected by a union contract, and the production of “evidence” for Goodell’s ludicrous “investigation,” is governed by the terms of that contract. The entire thing is a kangaroo court with no credibility.

    • Larry
      August 5, 2015 at 18:21

      JCC2455, thanks for your open-minded and logical reply, beginning with the phone ‘issue’. Commenter SHMANGE, above, jumps at all the untrue labor-hating NFL bait and gets fileted by the NFL propaganda (very willingly and happily, by the way).

      As you allude to, Goodell is a perfect boss for the labor-hating owners, who still wish and very often act as if they still ‘owned’ the players and could keep them from playing elsewhere, as in the bad old days. Goodell is a bully, is anti-union, and doesn’t mind in the least using hardball deceit and other sneaky manipulation to get what he wants; witness the sneaky negotiations, bait-and-switching, and withheld information Goodell used during the last round of collective bargaining.

      It’s no wonder the owners overpay him so richly, about $35 mil a year or so, and it’s interesting that some people think the playefs are overpaid but think Goodell has earned this particular white privilege). The owners and Goodell share the same absence of values. And it’s not as if even an average person couldn’t be the NFL commissioner and keep it rolling along just as well as Goodell in the moneymaking department. In fact, Goodell is coming perilously close – and serially so – to ruining the NFL for many, many of even its most passionate fans. Goodell being a right-wing ideologue and a cheater himself is the reason why.

      Funny how Goodell, the cheater, projects his own sin upon Brady.

    • Larry
      August 5, 2015 at 18:23

      Also re the phone thing, the NFL intentionally leaks like a sieve. I wouldn’t trust Goodell or his operatives with shielding my privacy either. And you’d have to be right off the turnip truck to trust Goodell about anything given his record.

    • Larry
      August 5, 2015 at 18:26

      And let’s remember who the ‘neutral’ arbitrator is – Goodell! If this doesn’t tell you that the Goodell and those particular other team owners aren’t pulling out all the stops for a rigged decision, then you can’t handle the truth. Probably wouldn’t recognize it either.

    • Skeldaddy
      August 1, 2015 at 18:55

      There are many, many problems with your post. You are exactly the sort of person that Goodell and his minions thrive upon. You cannot look past your anger long enough for reason to engage.

      First, there is no ‘criminal’ record. The Patriots organization has not committed a crime in this debacle and did not do so in 2007. We are talking about rules in what is in fact, a kid’s game.

      Second, there is no mechanism in the alleged rule violation here which allows Goodell to consider past sanctions. So what happened in 2007 is over, done with, never to be considered again. Except that Goodell more likely than not has the same mental block which you exhibit, which contributes to his erratic and capricious rulings.

      Third, the cell phone is much ado about nothing. It was a way to distract the gullible, a tactic which you fell for. Wells/Goodell had no right to it, knew they had no right to it and did so anyway, as a means of pseudoentrapment. Weaker minds fail to see this.

      I look for the Patriots organization to put more pressure on Goodell, with further release of information they had previously held confidential. The Pats may not win in a game of ‘gotcha,’ but they can certainly make the NFL look vindictive and stupid.

    • Smarter Tahn You
      August 1, 2015 at 20:50

      The ‘spying’ was using an unauthorized camera angle. Every other team was also ‘spying’ at the same game. They just used the correct camera location to do it.

      Anyone who owns a mobile phone knows that ‘destroying’ it does not destroy the text and phone data with it. Copies reside at the owner’s provider, recipients providers and recipients phones. The NFL already had possession of the recipients phones. Why did they need Brady’s.

      The NFL under Goodell has been a clumsy ham handed circus that gets slammed anytime an independent mediator is given the opportunity of oversight. Hopefully this will be the next and final one with Goodell and his staffs resignations following immediately after they get beaten down.

    • Anonymous
      August 2, 2015 at 10:16

      They admitted to filming from the wrong position on the field. An established criminal record??? Assuming you read and write English, please read the article again. It is written by a person capable of critical thinking, a quality that most “witch-hunters” lack. Jim Donnelly

    • larry
      August 5, 2015 at 18:08

      You made some crystal clear points, all of which are so untenable that they’re ridiculous. Equating Brady with Clinton does give away your bit of jealous one-sidedness here – you’re an ideologue through and through with little to no independent judgement renderable. Goodbye.

    • larry
      August 5, 2015 at 18:31

      Uh, this comment was supposed to be a reply to an above commenter. Parry, one of my heroes, obviously doesn’t conform to my opinion about that commenter.

    • Jay Reardon
      August 6, 2015 at 03:51

      Do some reading and research before you cop to the attitude. Cell phone issue is a red herring. Check the footnote to Goodell’s judgement wherein Brady offered to reconstruct and provide all texts/comms with 28 NFL affiliated persons. Wells told him to “keep your phone” and characterised Brady as “cooperative” with all aspects of his “investigation”. Even McCann, the SI sports lawyer/writer says there’s no evidence anywhere in both reports that Brady or the Pats did anything wrong. Even Mortenson, the NFL’s paid whore/leaker of false information says the Pats and Brady should never have been investigated for this. Anyways, stay tuned for 2015 — The Drive For Five starts September 10.

    • Jay Reardon
      August 6, 2015 at 03:54

      Maueen Dowd? HAHAHAHAHA! Hack All Star team there.

  11. Aman
    August 1, 2015 at 13:48

    The answer is too simple. Boycott professional football in all ways until the overgrown babies that run these teams and the leagues, scream and beg for forgiveness. Those teams will be worth close to nothing in short order if the American public can maybe focus on some real problems for even a short while. When that happens then it’s time for the fans to make some demands and the US public will realize they have more power than they ever thought possible.

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