TOM BRADY HAS BEEN SUSPENDED BY THE NFL
Here are some excerpts from the statement the NFL released yesterday:
The New England Patriots were notified today of the following discipline that has been imposed for violations of the NFL Policy on Integrity of the Game and Enforcement of Competitive Rules relating to the use of under-inflated footballs in the AFC Championship Game of this past season:
For the violation of the playing rules and the failure to cooperate in the subsequent investigation, the New England Patriots are fined $1 million and will forfeit the club’s first-round selection in the 2016 NFL Draft and the club’s fourth-round selection in the 2017 NFL Draft. If the Patriots have more than one selection in either of these rounds, the earlier selection shall be forfeited. The club may not trade or otherwise encumber these selections.
Quarterback Tom Brady will be suspended without pay for the first four games of the 2015 regular season for conduct detrimental to the integrity of the NFL. Brady may participate in all off-season, training camp and pre-season activities, including preseason games.
Commissioner Goodell authorized the discipline that was imposed by NFL Executive President Troy Vincent, pursuant to the commissioner’s disciplinary authority under the NFL Constitution and Bylaws and the Collective Bargaining Agreement with the NFL Players Association.
Former Dolphins and current Vice President of Football Operations Troy Vincent poured on the glory that some are calling punishment. He stated:
Here, there are several factors that merit strong consideration in assessing discipline. The first is the club’s prior record. In 2007 the club and several individuals were sanctioned for videotaping signals of opposing defensive coaches in violation of the Constitution and Bylaws. Under the Integrity of the Game Policy, this prior violation of competitive rules was properly considered in determining the discipline in this case.
Vincent Continued: Another important consideration identified in the Policy is ‘the extent to which the club and relevant individuals cooperated with the investigation.’
The Wells report identifies two significant failures in this respect. The first involves the refusal by the club’s attorneys to make Mr. McNally available for an additional interview, despite numerous requests by Mr. Wells and a cautionary note in writing of the club’s obligation to cooperate in the investigation. The second was the failure of Tom Brady to produce any electronic evidence (emails, texts, etc.), despite being offered extraordinary safeguards by the investigators to protect unrelated personal information. Although we do not hold the club directly responsible for Mr. Brady’s refusal to cooperate, it remains significant that the quarterback of the team failed to cooperate fully with the investigation.
Finally, it is significant that key witnesses — Mr. Brady, Mr. Jastremski, and Mr. McNally — were not fully candid during the investigation.
SO DOLFANS REJOICE
It does not get much better than this in the offseason.
Over the next few weeks you will see talking heads like Heath Evans and Teddy Bruschi try to defend Tom Brady. You will see Cheatriots fans rationalize absurd scenarios where “Tawmy Brady” is “Gawdlike” and was too busy saving a baby from a burning building to cooperate with the investigation. Enjoy watching everyone scramble to defend a cheater. But remember, he is no less a cheater.
There will be an appeal. Brady’s camp will insist the NFL is wrong and there is no evidence submitted. People will get excited about Jimmy Garoppolo. Talking heads will say remember 2007 when the Cheats when undefeated until the Super Bowl. Expect the “Bill Bellicheat will have this team ready” one liners. Bob Kraft is probably already plotting to accuse world leaders of conspiring against the Cheatriots.
Blah Blah Blah. Who cares. Enjoy this result. We’ve known about these cheats for years, we knew it was going to come out eventually, we know its probably worse than just deflating footballs…my prediction, this is just the start.