Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Brady, vu den?

I have read the executive summary of the Wells report two times now.  After the first time I felt as though it was damning. That is, I thought Brady was culpable.

I thought about it last night and then another thought came to me. What if one reads the summary with this assumption in mind: Assume that Brady did not tell the ball boys to under-inflate the  balls. Assume that Brady said--as a tyrannical manager might---"Make damn sure those balls come in at 12.5, or else."

For those who have not followed the nuances of this case, the balls can be anywhere from 12.5 to 13.5 pounds per square inch of pressure.  So let's say Brady likes the balls at 12.5.  When the attendant  brought the balls to the officials before the championship game he testified to the Wells commission, that he told the officials that Brady likes the ball at 12.5.  So this was no secret.

Now let's say that throughout the year Brady was breaking the stones of the attendants when he felt the balls were above 12.5. And he said, "Make real sure, real sure those balls are at 12.5."

If you read the report with this assumption, then there is nothing about the testimony that suggests that Brady was culpable in breaking the rules. What he wanted--fully within the rules--is to make sure the balls were at the lowest permissible level.

It would make sense then that the attendants were upset with Brady for the same reason we get upset with bosses who are tyrannical and don't care about how things get done, just that they get done. It would make sense they would quip that way and one may even call himself, "the deflator."

The one line in the testimony that still sticks out is the one where an attendant says to the other, "I'm not going to espn....yet."  That suggests illegal activity. Unless continuous harassment about the balls, in itself, was an offense worthy of scrutiny by the sports network.

"Tom Brady, it appears, harasses his ball boys making life miserable for them."  

That could be a story.  I do have some doubts about this being a reasonable explanation.

However, I have no doubt that if you think of the context as I have described it, there is not sufficient evidence in the report to suggest that Brady tried to break the rules.

I think the NFL will have hell to pay if Brady can support a claim that he never asked for anyone to break the rules, just that he insisted that the balls be at the minimum psi.

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