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GB4

Deflategate Fallout

250 posts in this topic

As a Patriot fan and as someone who strongly believes Brady and Bill B are the best ever at what they do, here is my opinion on this whole ordeal.

 

1. Brady was wrong for playing dumb about the whole situation and for the rules infraction. He should be punished accordingly. Which brings me to point 2:

2. This is not a major infraction, this is not a huge competitive advantage that will change the outcome of games(especially not the AFC Title game). Colin Cowherd likened it to pine tar in baseball-I agree with this for the most part. I don't see this being as big of an advantage as a player using PEDs, however I would fully understand the punishment being similar.

3. The NFL and mainly the head official who did not record the PSI of each football pregame should get some blame for ALLOWING this to happen. If the NFL thought this was a big deal they would either

          a. ensure all measurements are recorded pre-game

          b. enforce both teams to use the same set of ball-as they used to a few years back

          c. not allow a member of either team or organization to touch the ball before the game

          d. not continue allowing the Patriots to finish playing the 1st half with balls that they had knowledge of being deflated-I understand the whole "let's let them commit the crime while we are watching to catch them" debate, but the NFL knew the balls were deflated in the first half and they continued to let the Patriots use them until halftime-must not be a huge deal

4. This ordeal is getting blown up because it is the Patriots-I understand that-you have the tuck rule, spygate, and now deflategate-plenty of reasons to hate the Patriots and try to view them as a sinister organization-I can't say that I blame anyone for having some views like this

5. At the end of the day, I hope Brady is suspended 4 games(I wanna see his first game back in Indy baby! Can you imagine that atmosphere?!?!) mainly because this is a similar punishment to PED use which is another form of competitive advantage. I don't want the NFL to be lenient on him and allow people to criticize them for it. He broke a rule, i'm sure there have been several other teams to break the same rule in the last few years, but nonetheless Tom Brady was caught "probably" doing it lol

6. If anybody wants to use this to take away from Brady's remarkable talent and climb to fame then I don't think they really understand football. Will it tarnish his legacy? yes, a little, as it should. But when you look at the end of last season you still have Tom Brady going 37/50 with 4 TDs in the biggest game of the year against the daunted Seahawk defense with properly inflated footballs.

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My only disagreement with you is on the length of the suspension. There is a proven competitive advantage to the use of PEDs, and such proof is lacking with respect to a slightly underinflated football. In fact, the only real proof is that Brady shredded the Colts with properly inflated balls, but not with the so-called "deflated" balls. So, objectively, we have no proof that the slight underinflation provides any advantage whatsoever. Also, the use of the more serious PEDs (anabolic steroids, HGH) is against federal law without a legal prescription, but there's no lawbreaking involved in deflating footballs.

 

Fine him $50K and give him a game off. Then move on.

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My only disagreement with you is on the length of the suspension. There is a proven competitive advantage to the use of PEDs, and such proof is lacking with respect to a slightly underinflated football. In fact, the only real proof is that Brady shredded the Colts with properly inflated balls, but not with the so-called "deflated" balls. So, objectively, we have no proof that the slight underinflation provides any advantage whatsoever. Also, the use of the more serious PEDs (anabolic steroids, HGH) is against federal law without a legal prescription, but there's no lawbreaking involved in deflating footballs.

 

Fine him $50K and give him a game off. Then move on.

I certainly agree with you that PEDs provide a much more proven advantage, but I think Goodell and the NFL will go too far overboard with this instead of being too lenient. An interesting thing I have heard, that I also agree with, is that the biggest advantage of deflated balls is when a runner is carrying the ball. Much easier to grip and hold on to preventing fumbles, of course the Patriots rarely ever fumble so perhaps this is why.

Also bring up a good point about the new steroid law with the ban of HGH and anabolic steroids, again I don't disagree with you that deflating footballs is far less significant.

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I certainly agree with you that PEDs provide a much more proven advantage, but I think Goodell and the NFL will go too far overboard with this instead of being too lenient. An interesting thing I have heard, that I also agree with, is that the biggest advantage of deflated balls is when a runner is carrying the ball. Much easier to grip and hold on to preventing fumbles, of course the Patriots rarely ever fumble so perhaps this is why.

Also bring up a good point about the new steroid law with the ban of HGH and anabolic steroids, again I don't disagree with you that deflating footballs is far less significant.

I've been waiting for someone to raise the "fumble" issue. The Patriots during the Brady era are the only NFL team that is over 70 carries per fumble. Now, let's see what all the junk scientists do with that stat.

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Paging Richard Nixon, Richard Nixon to the clubhouse please

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Paging Richard Nixon, Richard Nixon to the clubhouse please

Nixon wasn't as good of a President as Brady is a QB lol

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if there is no obvious advantage to having a football below 12.5psi, then why have the rule?  Get rid of the rule.  I don't put much stock in Colin Cowherd's comments since I don't believe he played much college or professional football. (I could be wrong)  

 

But until the rule is amended or abolished, follow it.  Sorry Bob, but I don't think as an official, you should be able to decide the impact or severity of rule non-compliance.  If its a rule, enforce it.

 

Also, if football integrity is that important to the NFL, why aren't they supplying the footballs in lieu of each team providing their own?  Please don't tell me the NFL can't afford the footballs.  I'm guessing they could work a deal out with Wilson.

 

I'm guessing the Pats have been deflating footballs for years, as other teams have been doing.  I also don't believe Bill had zero clue...anyone that does can look for some choice swampland in Louisiana to purchase.  One can grip a football  better with less pressure if you believe what other current and former NFLers have stated.  If all teams have the opportunity to grip the ball better, I could care less if the balls are <12.5psi.  So I have no problem with the rule being eliminated.  But until that occurs, follow the rule or take the risk and suffer the consequences.  That would apply to all teams...not just the Pats.

 

Totally agree had no impact in the Colts game....with the Ravens the previous game?  That's a different question.

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While the advantage may not seem obvious, I brought this up in the topic when the allegation came out. ESPN had the receivers that are part of their NFL group, Keyshawn Johnson and Chris Carter, along with Steve Young and Matt (or Tim) Hasselback. They would throw and catch the balls. Some were inflated to normal pressure, and some were not. Both QBs and Receivers were 100% on guessing which balls were which. They all had great points too. In cold or bad weather, the difference would be more noticeable. All 4 said something to the effect that you spend SOOOO much time working on timing as QBs and receivers, every detail is noticeable. Compare it to a tennis player knowing exactly what tension to put on when his racket is strung; or even a bowler knowing exactly where the holes in the ball should be drilled, a golfer knowing the weight of his clubs and the angle of the shaft, a hockey player knowing exactly what flexibility he wants in his stick, as well as how much curve in his blade. These guys are paid millions of dollars and elite athletes will spend a LOT of time with each other and the equipment they compete with. That is a large part of why they are elite. These guys knew EXACTLY what they were doing in this case. I am also of the opinion that there is a direct link between the deflating and the fumble numbers Bob posted. 

I will state I have no dog in this fight. I am not a Pats fan, but I also do not hate them like Colts fans do. I was hoping they would win the SB because I DO hate Pete Carroll.

Now, as far as punishment goes, we know there is a pattern of outright cheating within this team. Maybe this instance does not rise to the level of using PED's, but it does rise to a level of a team and its coaches thumbing their noses at the league and its rules. I am fine with a one game suspension, but any fines that come out of it should hurt and hurt bad. They should be treated as repeat offenders instead of looking at this one incident. I will even say that losing draft picks should be part of the conversation.

If this is something other teams are doing, then the league needs to simply take over. Teams adapted quickly to the use of kicking balls, they will adapt quickly to a standard sized ball as well.

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if there is no obvious advantage to having a football below 12.5psi, then why have the rule?  Get rid of the rule.  I don't put much stock in Colin Cowherd's comments since I don't believe he played much college or professional football. (I could be wrong)  

 

But until the rule is amended or abolished, follow it.  Sorry Bob, but I don't think as an official, you should be able to decide the impact or severity of rule non-compliance.  If its a rule, enforce it.

 

Also, if football integrity is that important to the NFL, why aren't they supplying the footballs in lieu of each team providing their own?  Please don't tell me the NFL can't afford the footballs.  I'm guessing they could work a deal out with Wilson.

 

I'm guessing the Pats have been deflating footballs for years, as other teams have been doing.  I also don't believe Bill had zero clue...anyone that does can look for some choice swampland in Louisiana to purchase.  One can grip a football  better with less pressure if you believe what other current and former NFLers have stated.  If all teams have the opportunity to grip the ball better, I could care less if the balls are <12.5psi.  So I have no problem with the rule being eliminated.  But until that occurs, follow the rule or take the risk and suffer the consequences.  That would apply to all teams...not just the Pats.

 

Totally agree had no impact in the Colts game....with the Ravens the previous game?  That's a different question.

I said it wasn't a "huge competitive advantage" I didn't say that there was no obvious advantage to it. I think it's more a mental thing than anything else. For instance, people drive cars that say the recommended tire pressure is 35 but maybe they feel better with closer to 40. There isn't an obvious advantage in handling or fuel economy, but mentally they feel better knowing what is in there is the amount they want. Now, I know there are several differences between these two cases but the main thesis is similar.

 

As for Cowherd, he talks to pro athletes and members of pro organizations everyday. Therefore I put more stock in what he says then what you say and more than what I say even though I played college football. His point on comparing it to pine tar in baseball was likely something that he had heard others compare it to, or agree with him about, others as in professional members of the media or former athletes like Chad Pennington who was on his show yesterday and agreed with him.

 

Now, I do agree with you that the rule should be either done away with or taken more seriously by the league. You know, like making sure the official actually checks the PSI in the balls pre-game and records it maybe? Or, you know, actually checking the balls when they have strong reason to believe they are under the allowed limit rather than letting the first half continue. The best way to fix all this is like you said, the NFL actually supplying the footballs to the teams or just having a set of 10-12 balls that are used in the game by both teams.

 

As for the Patriot coaching staff, and Bill, he probably did know. BUT the Wells Report cleared him and the Patriot organization of any knowledge of the matter, therefore I don't see how they could be punished or blamed for the situation.

 

Suspend him 4 games, fine him some money, and raise the ticket prices for Sunday Night Football on week 6. Win-Win for the NFL lol

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TD, you misunderstand me. I'm not advocating disregard of the rules. Nor did I ever even imply that officials should make the sort of judgment that you attributed to me. My remarks were directed at making the punishment fit the crime, not doing away with punishment. Where I do differ significantly from your position, however, is your willingness to assume that violation of this rule -- and, I guess, any rule -- automatically confers a competitive advantage on the rulebreaker. Sometimes people break rules because they assume -- not always correctly -- that by fudging the rule they get an advantage. They are just as capable of being wrong in that assumption as you are. My point was that there is no objective evidence to support the assumption that a slight deflation of the football results in a measurable competitive advantage. In fact, the only objective evidence suggests the contrary, although I acknowledge it's an extremely small sample and would not be willing to say that it constitutes anything near conclusive evidence on that subject. But I suggest that the only way to truly determine the existence of a competitive advantage is to either analyze past performance in a statistically valid way, or construct an appropriate test going forward. Neither of these has been attempted, the former because it's impossible and the latter because it hasn't been tried. Absent that sort of proof, I'm not making any such assumption, and I suggest that the people who do make the assumption are doing so because their attitude is affected by "non-objective" factors, i.e., "it's the Patriots."

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I said it wasn't a "huge competitive advantage" I didn't say that there was no obvious advantage to it. I think it's more a mental thing than anything else. For instance, people drive cars that say the recommended tire pressure is 35 but maybe they feel better with closer to 40. There isn't an obvious advantage in handling or fuel economy, but mentally they feel better knowing what is in there is the amount they want. Now, I know there are several differences between these two cases but the main thesis is similar.

 

As for Cowherd, he talks to pro athletes and members of pro organizations everyday. Therefore I put more stock in what he says then what you say and more than what I say even though I played college football. His point on comparing it to pine tar in baseball was likely something that he had heard others compare it to, or agree with him about, others as in professional members of the media or former athletes like Chad Pennington who was on his show yesterday and agreed with him.

 

Now, I do agree with you that the rule should be either done away with or taken more seriously by the league. You know, like making sure the official actually checks the PSI in the balls pre-game and records it maybe? Or, you know, actually checking the balls when they have strong reason to believe they are under the allowed limit rather than letting the first half continue. The best way to fix all this is like you said, the NFL actually supplying the footballs to the teams or just having a set of 10-12 balls that are used in the game by both teams.

 

As for the Patriot coaching staff, and Bill, he probably did know. BUT the Wells Report cleared him and the Patriot organization of any knowledge of the matter, therefore I don't see how they could be punished or blamed for the situation.

 

Suspend him 4 games, fine him some money, and raise the ticket prices for Sunday Night Football on week 6. Win-Win for the NFL lol

I guess I put more faith in guys like Dan Marino, and other former NFL players than I do a person such as Cowherd.  I think Troy Aikman has also been pretty vocal.

 

http://www.si.com/nfl/2015/01/21/dan-marino-deflated-footballs-quarterbacks-deflategate

 

http://www.cnn.com/videos/sports/2015/01/21/natpkg-scholes-coy-wire-deflated-football-101.cnn

 

That being said, my biggest issue is with the NFL.  They pay former NFL players to be uniform police and they hand out fines for socks, writing on shoes, etc. yet they can't have a system in place to check the balls before a game?  Additionally, the IndyStar reported that Grigson emailed the NFL office with confirmation they would look into the concern PRIOR to the AFC championship and did NOTHING.  If this rule was that important to them, one would think they would act appropriately.

 

http://www.indystar.com/story/sports/nfl/colts/colts-insider/2015/05/07/indianapolis-colts-ryan-grigson-email-new-england-patriots-deflategate/70940172/

 

I don't disagree with your comments about Bill...and there is a part of me that thinks 4 games is too much.  People calling for a year is way too extreme in my opinion.

 

I think we align...if the rule is important, the NFL should act like they care way before it gets to this level...if they don't, then they need to stop pretending and get rid of it.

Edited by Trojan Dad
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TD, you misunderstand me. I'm not advocating disregard of the rules. Nor did I ever even imply that officials should make the sort of judgment that you attributed to me. My remarks were directed at making the punishment fit the crime, not doing away with punishment. Where I do differ significantly from your position, however, is your willingness to assume that violation of this rule -- and, I guess, any rule -- automatically confers a competitive advantage on the rulebreaker. Sometimes people break rules because they assume -- not always correctly -- that by fudging the rule they get an advantage. They are just as capable of being wrong in that assumption as you are. My point was that there is no objective evidence to support the assumption that a slight deflation of the football results in a measurable competitive advantage. In fact, the only objective evidence suggests the contrary, although I acknowledge it's an extremely small sample and would not be willing to say that it constitutes anything near conclusive evidence on that subject. But I suggest that the only way to truly determine the existence of a competitive advantage is to either analyze past performance in a statistically valid way, or construct an appropriate test going forward. Neither of these has been attempted, the former because it's impossible and the latter because it hasn't been tried. Absent that sort of proof, I'm not making any such assumption, and I suggest that the people who do make the assumption are doing so because their attitude is affected by "non-objective" factors, i.e., "it's the Patriots."

My bad....I misunderstood.  I do disagree with your comments about an advantage...there are a number of former players, current coaches believe differently and scientific evidence of deflated footballs....lots just using your favorite search engine.  Do I necessarily think its a huge advantage??  Not sure....I do know D'Quell Jackson actually actually caught a football.....;)  

 

I agree with the punishment fitting the crime as you can see my comments to Fish.  I also have major heartburn with the NFL....how they administer this rule, how they respond to concerns about non-compliance before an event, and certainly the manner in which they investigate.  What a joke.  The NFL should be embarrassed and I'd like to see them slapped way, way harder than Brady and the Pats.  

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I could be mistaken but didn't the officials check the balls prior to the game and then the balls disappeared?

 

I think Brady will get in more trouble for not fully cooperating with the investigation than for his "awareness" of what McNally and JJ more probably than not did.  I caught a little bit of Bill Polian on Mike & Mike on the way to work and he mentioned that the NFL mandated (probably the wrong word to use) full cooperation from all teams and personnel in 2008 following either Spygate or Bountygate.

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I could be mistaken but didn't the officials check the balls prior to the game and then the balls disappeared?

 

I think Brady will get in more trouble for not fully cooperating with the investigation than for his "awareness" of what McNally and JJ more probably than not did.  I caught a little bit of Bill Polian on Mike & Mike on the way to work and he mentioned that the NFL mandated (probably the wrong word to use) full cooperation from all teams and personnel in 2008 following either Spygate or Bountygate.

They check something like 2 hours before the game and return them to the teams.

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They check something like 2 hours before the game and return them to the teams.

Either I read something wrong or I am mis-remembering but I thought the game balls were brought to the officials to check and mark and then the balls were taken to the field prior to the game by team personnel but with an official as an escort.  This is why the official for the AFC Championship game was freaking out when they couldn't find the Patriots footballs.

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If it is so obvious that under-inflated footballs confer a competitive advantage, how can the following facts be reconciled?

The Colts alerted league officials to the issue days before the game.

The game officials lost track of the footballs for some period of time after they were checked and before they were brought to the field.

The NFL allowed the first half to be played before they directed that the balls be re-checked.

Does this compel the conclusion that the league was willing to let the Patriots play 1/2 the AFC Championship game with an illegal advantage?

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If it is so obvious that under-inflated footballs confer a competitive advantage, how can the following facts be reconciled?

The Colts alerted league officials to the issue days before the game.

The game officials lost track of the footballs for some period of time after they were checked and before they were brought to the field.

The NFL allowed the first half to be played before they directed that the balls be re-checked.

Does this compel the conclusion that the league was willing to let the Patriots play 1/2 the AFC Championship game with an illegal advantage?

How can you conclude there was an illegal advantage based on those three facts alone?

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My point is that it's more likely there was no advantage, because it's hard for me to believe that the NFL would allow the first half of a conference championship game to be played with footballs they had reason to suspect were illegally underinflated ... if they really thought that provided a competitive advantage. Suppose that, in fact, playing with footballs at 11.5 psi rather than 12.5 gave the Patriots an advantage, and they ran out to a 4 TD lead in the first half before the balls were checked and found to be underinflated. Then, it came out later, that the NFL had reason to believe the Patriots would try to play with underinflated footballs and the balls were out of the game officials' control for a significant period of time after being checked before the game. It would place the legitimacy of the game outcome in doubt. Do you really think the NFL would do that? They clearly knew of the Colts' complaint days before the game. They also knew that the balls were out of the officials' control for a period of time. One conclusion to be drawn from that is that they are incompetent nitwits. The other is that they didn't think it was a big deal.

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My point is that it's more likely there was no advantage, because it's hard for me to believe that the NFL would allow the first half of a conference championship game to be played with footballs they had reason to suspect were illegally underinflated ... if they really thought that provided a competitive advantage. Suppose that, in fact, playing with footballs at 11.5 psi rather than 12.5 gave the Patriots an advantage, and they ran out to a 4 TD lead in the first half before the balls were checked and found to be underinflated. Then, it came out later, that the NFL had reason to believe the Patriots would try to play with underinflated footballs and the balls were out of the game officials' control for a significant period of time after being checked before the game. It would place the legitimacy of the game outcome in doubt. Do you really think the NFL would do that? They clearly knew of the Colts' complaint days before the game. They also knew that the balls were out of the officials' control for a period of time. One conclusion to be drawn from that is that they are incompetent nitwits. The other is that they didn't think it was a big deal.

LOL I would say both are highly likely!

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My point is that it's more likely there was no advantage, because it's hard for me to believe that the NFL would allow the first half of a conference championship game to be played with footballs they had reason to suspect were illegally underinflated ... if they really thought that provided a competitive advantage. Suppose that, in fact, playing with footballs at 11.5 psi rather than 12.5 gave the Patriots an advantage, and they ran out to a 4 TD lead in the first half before the balls were checked and found to be underinflated. Then, it came out later, that the NFL had reason to believe the Patriots would try to play with underinflated footballs and the balls were out of the game officials' control for a significant period of time after being checked before the game. It would place the legitimacy of the game outcome in doubt. Do you really think the NFL would do that? They clearly knew of the Colts' complaint days before the game. They also knew that the balls were out of the officials' control for a period of time. One conclusion to be drawn from that is that they are incompetent nitwits. The other is that they didn't think it was a big deal.

Yeah...because the NFL has a track record of outstanding governance and consistency....seriously Bob?

 

Since you think having a football out of spec in terms of air pressure is meaningless, then why have the rule?  Why do you dismiss what former greats like Marino and Aikman have to say?  Why do you dismiss Bill Polian's comments on ESPN, being on the rules committee for years?

 

We all agree it had no bearing in the Colts game...but can you for certain say it had no bearing against the Ravens the week prior?  (unless you what me to honestly believe this was a one time violation......)  Again, I'm not saying its the biggest issue in the NFL, but integrity of the game matters.  If only Brady and the Pats would have followed Atlanta's lead with the pumped in noise, and simply admitted it, this would all be in the rear view mirror.

 

According to CBS, Goodell (not a big fan) does not seem to share your opinion.....

 

http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/eye-on-football/25179489/report-goodell-considers-bradys-deflategate-role-a-serious-violation

Edited by Trojan Dad
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Prediction

250-500k fine

4 games for Brady

Loss of 2nd round DP

NFL will soon change policy and league will provide all balls for games. Teams warm up with own balls, game balls introduced at kickoff.

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