The suspension was for a violation that occurred back in the AFC Championship game when the Indianapolis Colts discovered that — you know what, I’ll stop right there. I can’t do it. I can’t talk about Deflategate anymore. I don’t want to hear about deflated footballs, the New England Patriots or Tom Brady anymore, and quite frankly, neither should you.
This is by far the most ridiculous incident that has occurred in the NFL in recent memory, which is saying something considering what’s gone on in the league in just the past year. First off, let me start by saying that I agree that what was done was wrong. Whether Brady was involved or not, if the NFL requires a football to be inflated a certain pound per square inch (PSI) and it should remain unaltered. So should the Patriots and/or Brady, if found to be involved (which it appears he might have been), been punished? Absolutely. However, a suspension of four regular season games, which is a quarter of the season, for deflating a football and “violating the integrity of the game” is absurd.
Let’s take a look at some recent suspensions the NFL has handed down. Saints defensive coordinator Gregg Williams and head coach Sean Payton were suspended for the 2012 season and assistant head coach Joe Vitta received six games for their involvement in the Saints bounty program involving players getting paid to attempt to injure opponents. For an issue as serious as that they should have been given harsh suspensions. Then there’s Andy Moeller, an offensive line coach on the Baltimore Ravens, who was suspended for two games back in September 2011 for driving under the influence. So the NFL thinks deflating footballs is two times worse than a DUI, an actual crime that could have had a severely negative impact on many lives.
So the suspension is one issue, but how about the fact that football starts this week and it took until the first week of September to get this suspension overturned? Brady appealed to the NFL in late May; his suspension stood, then he went to federal court in June and, two and a half months later, he finally got his suspension removed.
After nearly nine months, we finally have an end to Deflategate. Wait, not so fast, reports say that Goodell and the NFL will appeal the decision of the appeal to the already stood-up appeal. Confused yet?
So instead of discussing whether Marcus Mariota can turn the Tennessee Titans around or what the heck is going on in Philadelphia, we are stuck talking about Tom Brady and deflated footballs. At this point, I don’t care if the NFL’s appeal is heard or not heard, if Brady is suspended or not suspended, I just want to stop hearing about it.
Tom Brady will play week 1 after all.