Saturday, May 09, 2015

0, 11, 4 and 1

The four numbers in the post title (0, 11. 4 and 1) to me explain the crux of the so called "deflategate" kerfuffle and the Wells Report (and yes I freely admit I am a Patriots fanboy).

The number 0: That's the number of balls head referee Walt Anderson recorded the PSI of prior to the AFC Championship game. Without this recorded baseline all comparisons are basically worthless. This was a clear failure on the part of the NFL and their representative in Anderson if this issue is as important to the integrity of the game as they trying to make it out to be. The number 0 is also the number of times that any referee has taken a ball used by Tom Brady out of a game because it felt "off" or under-inflated. That's in Brady's NFL career! No referee has EVER questioned whether a ball being used by the Patriots while Brady was under center was not up to NFL standards in terms of proper inflation.

The numbers 11 and 4: The number 11 is the number of balls the referees checked belonging to the Patriots during halftime of the AFC Championship game. The number 4 is the number of balls the referees checked during the same halftime belonging to the Colts. The reason given for why not all the Colts balls were checked was because there wasn't enough time. So I guess either the issue wasn't important enough (take all the time you want on an instant replay though) or the NFL checked the balls they wanted (i.e. they were interested in "catching" the Patriots and not the Colts). Any scientific experiment has to have a proper control group and comparing 11 balls to another 11 balls used in the same game conditions would have provided such a comparison point. But I guess a fair comparison wasn't what the NFL was after.

The number 1: That's the number of balls used in the AFC Championship game that were actually tampered with. However, since that ball was tampered with by an NFL employee who was trying to sell game balls for his own personal benefit I guess that doesn't count. Seriously did anything about this make it into the Wells report? Or because it reflected badly on the NFL was it white-washed?

I would love to see Tom Brady sue the NFL and Roger Goodell for defamation over the damage Brady's reputation has suffered because of this. I know there are issues with such a suit but I think just for the discovery process and the potential to damage Roger Goodell's already shaky public image such a suit would be worth the cost to Brady. How great would it be for Brady to come out and say, "I have always valued my integrity and good name and to have that sullied by Roger Goodell, a man who has shown almost no integrity since he's taken over as Commissioner, is something I will not stand."

So let it be written - so let it be done.

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