Brady suspension overturned
Aug 28, 2015; Charlotte, NC, USA; New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) stretches prior to the game against the Carolina Panthers at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports
Judge Richard M. Berman nullified the NFL’s four-game suspension of Tom Brady for his deflated balls last week, giving Brady and the Patriots their first major victory of the season. The decision will prove to be huge for the NFL and NFLPA as it basically declares that Rogeez does not have the great and powerful Oz-like power over the NFL players when it comes to discipline.
To be clear, the judge wasn’t ruling on whether or not Brady orchestrated or even played a role in the ball-deflating program. That ship has sailed. What Judge Berman was ruling on was whether or not the NFL’s suspension and appeal process was fair, based on the CBA and the laws about collective bargaining.
Unfortunately for the NFL, the judge recognized how poorly the league handled this from the get-go and decided that not only did they not properly inform Brady of the punishment he faced, or his accusations, they also didn’t let his lawyers question NFL executive and counsel Jeff Pash at the appeal as well as not give Brady’s side the opportunity to check out the evidence against him.
Steelers players may have said they’re looking forward to facing Brady in the season opener in New England on Thursday night, but Steelers fans know that this ain’t looking good for the Black & Gold. What’s worse is, according to Mike Florio of PFT, Brady was opening to settle and accept a one-game suspension as late as last Monday, for failing to cooperate.
Brady was never willing to admit guilt for his balls and the league was never willing to settle without an admission of guilt, so a settlement was never reached. Florio cites Ian Rapoport with the report of Brady’s willingness to serve the one-game suspension, so there’s a chance it isn’t true.
I’m not saying that Rapoport is a liar, I’m just saying that he’s like the meteorologist of the NFL. He gets to be wrong all the time and still keep a job. If Ian Rapoport tells me it’s going to rain, I’m going to go ahead and leave my umbrella at home.
Next: What a mess