My grandmother thinks Tom Brady cheated. She thinks Brady should be ashamed of himself. And for that, I blame Roger Goodell.
As I sit here trying to continuously analyze the Wells Report, the only emotion I can muster up is one of genuine disdain.
Not directed towards Tom Brady. Not directed towards anyone in the New England Patriots organization. That anger is entirely aimed at the National Football League, and more specifically, Goodell, for allowing the air pressure in a football to come to this.
When I say “this,” I mean an investigation, followed by a 243-page report, followed by a embarrassingly-severe punishment, followed by a clarification conference-call by the man who wrote that report, followed by a rebuttal from the organization being accused of breaking a rule.
It’s a rule, mind you, that nobody in the entire league cared about, until now. And yet, here we are, with Brady having received a four-game suspension, the Patriots having lost two draft picks, and $1 million.
Yeah, disdain is the right word. And Goodell is the person I’m angry at. I mean, after all, he made my grandmother hate Brady. And that’s a pretty tough thing to do.
As of Thursday afternoon, the NFL commissioner still hadn’t spoken. He had Troy Vincent write letters to the Patriots and to Brady. Heck, we’ve even had a Ted Wells conference call before Goodell has even poked his head out of the door.
Wells had 243 pages to clarify anything and everything that he needed to clarify. He then felt the need to have his own media session in order to explain himself after the league handed out its punishment.
Uh, Teddy boy, that’s not how this works. If you can’t explain yourself in 243 pages or less, then you’ve failed miserably. But Goodell should have never even let it go this far.
Now, the Patriots have released a Wells Report “rebuttal,” in which they give their reasoning for believing “the conclusions of the Wells Report are, at best, incomplete, incorrect, and lack context.”
But let’s be honest, this rebuttal isn’t for people like myself, who believe this has been a non-issue since the first time “Deflategate” was reported over three months ago. It’s not for people who have common sense and understand that the air pressure in a football has had no bearing on the success of Brady or the Patriots.
And that’s not saying my grandmother lacks common sense. But she sees what’s reported. She hears that her quarterback was “illegally deflating footballs in order to gain a competitive edge.”
When I first heard the news of Brady’s suspension, I was up at my grandmother’s house. As the news broke, she looked up to me and yelled unpleasantly, “He used to be an All-American boy!”
The report on TV was telling her that Brady would have to now miss the first four games of the regular season. They were relaying this news to her as if Brady was a criminal.
Thinking to myself, “it’s only a football,” all I could do was turn back to the television.
It was that moment in which I realized I hated Roger Goodell. For he made my grandmother hate Tom Brady.
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