|Judge Richard Berman says he was pleased to see Patriots win Super Bowl LI||03.17.17 at 3:04 pm ET|
When the Patriots defeated the Falcons and pulled off the biggest comeback in Super Bowl history, there was at least one person in the Tri-State area who was pleased: Judge Richard Berman.
In a recent interview with The MMQB, Berman spoke at length for the first time about the Patriots’ big win. He said he thinks the victory finally put an end to Deflategate.
“I think Deflategate is finally put to rest by that Super Bowl,” he said. “I always thought in the back of my mind when I had the case, that this is a case that should be settled on the field. Not in the courts, not with an arbitrator, and ultimately, that’s what happened. And in such a dramatic way that it left no doubt.”
When Judge Berman negated Brady’s four-game suspension in September 2015, he skewered the NFL for what he considered to be a flawed arbitration process. Even though a federal appeals court overturned his decision, he said he would rule the same way if the case were presented in front of him today.
“I concluded that the NFL arbitration process was fundamentally flawed –– principally because of lack of notice of the alleged infraction and of a potential four-game suspension; inappropriate comparison of football deflation to use of steroids; failure to allow Brady’s counsel to question NFL general counsel [Jeff] Pash; and refusal to share with counsel the notes of witness interviews,” Berman said. “The commissioner’s arbitration award was not entitled to ‘deference’ by the courts also because he had a personal stake in the outcome of the appeal. That is, he had an incurable conflict of interest, evident partiality, and could not possibly be fair.”
In April 2016, eight months after Berman’s ruling, the NFL won its Deflategate appeal. In a 2-1 decision, the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals said commissioner Roger Goodell possesses broad authority to discipline players at his behest. Berman said it stung to read the ruling, but now he’s moving on –– largely thanks to the Patriots’ Super Bowl LI late-game heroics.
“It took awhile [to let it go], so the Super Bowl was good for me too,” he said.
|When asked about Deflategate, Robert Kraft notes he doesn’t hold grudges, but remembers everything||02.21.17 at 6:39 pm ET|
Patriots owner Robert Kraft will join Andrea Kremer on HBO’s “Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel” that premieres Tuesday night and prior to the airing a sneak preview was released.
The preview showed Kraft getting asked about Deflategate and if he holds a grudge towards the league.
“I really don’t hold grudges,” Kraft said. “I mean, I remember everything, but I move on.”
Added Kraft: “Envy and jealousy are incurable diseases. The haters still hate. And I understand it, and we’ll do our best to keep them in that position.”
Kraft also defended Tom Brady, who obviously Deflategate centered around.
“He’s just not the greatest quarterback in the history of the NFL,” Kraft said. “He’s an amazing human being. And is genuine. And as nice as everybody thinks he is, he’s nicer. And to see anyone attack him as an individual or his integrity. And that just wasn’t fair.”
The complete interview will air Tuesday at 10 p.m. on HBO.
For more Patriots news, visit weei.com/patriots.
|Roger Goodell praises Tom Brady, calls Patriots QB ‘maybe one of the greatest players of all time’||02.06.17 at 10:49 am ET|
HOUSTON — There was no throwdown between Roger Goodell and Tom Brady at the Super Bowl MVP press conference on Monday morning.
The two, who were locked in a legal battle over Deflategate for an extended period of time, came face-to-face less than 12 hours after Brady and the Patriots beat the Falcons in the Super Bowl Sunday night for the traditional day-after press conference.
“His legacy is not just a great Super Bowl performer, but maybe one of the greatest players of all time,” Goodell said of Brady.
When it came to coach Bill Belichick, Goodell was similarly effusive in his praise.
“His success in five Super Bowls, [cements] his legacy as perhaps the best coach of all time,” said the commissioner.
“A great honor for us — for me personality — to have both of these guys here this morning,” he added, before calling Brady to the podium to receive the Super Bowl MVP trophy.
“Tom, come on up,” Goodell said with a smile. “Get your trophy.”
For more Patriots news, check out weei.com/patriots.
|Roger Goodell: We’re moving on from Deflategate||02.01.17 at 3:39 pm ET|
HOUSTON — Although Deflategate was two years ago, it still was a subject at Roger Goodell’s state of the league address on Wednesday.
There have been recent reports of some believing Goodell got bad advice when it came to how he handled Deflategate.
Goodell was asked if he regrets how he handled the case.
“No, we had a violation,” he said. “We went through a process. We applied the discipline with a process. It was litigated as you know extensively and validated by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. We’re moving on from that. That’s part of our history, but something that we’re comfortable with the process, the decision and as I said we’re focusing on the game now.”
Later in the nearly 50-minute session, CSNNE’s Tom E. Curran had an exchange with the commissioner regarding a perceived lack of trust of his office and he himself.
Curran: “Just one quick fact check, the courts didn’t up hold the investigation, it upholded your rights to go ahead and do what you did.”
Goodell interrupts: “Tom, if you look at the Second Circuit Court, the decision they set, there were compelling, if not over-whelming facts and that’s the point I just made.”
Curran: “OK. From prominent players in the league to fan bases in San Diego, New England to the media, there seems to be an erosion of [lack] of trust in you and your office. Do you acknowledge that and is there any way you would repair that, or seek to do so?”
Goodell: “The thing you have to do every day is earn that trust, earn that creditability and it is how you act and how you do things — being transparent, making sure people understand the decisions you make. I don’t expect for one second people to agree with every decision I make or we make as a league. Those aren’t always difficult, sometimes pretentious and sometimes less than perfect decisions. You do them in the best interest of the long-term health of the game and the NFL. I think we do that. We always seek to do things better. I will always to seek do things better. … If we can do it differently. We will do it differently.”
With the way Deflategate was handled and other instances since, it appears there will always be at least some lack of trust of what happens on Park Avenue.
|Tom Brady Sr. hammers Roger Goodell, accuses him of lying about Deflategate||01.27.17 at 10:55 pm ET|
The father of Patriots quarterback Tom Brady ripped Roger Goodell on Friday, telling TV station KRON that the commissioner “constantly lied” about what went on during Deflategate, and his actions were “beyond reprehensible.”
“When it happens to your son, it’s a whole different context,” Tom Brady Sr. explained. “Or your daughter or any one of your kids. And I think any parent kind of understands that. They’d rather take the slings and arrows in the heart than have their kids take it. For what the league did to [Tom] and what Roger Goodell constantly lied about is beyond reprehensible, as far as I’m concerned.
“[Goodell] went on a witch hunt, and went in way over his head, and had to lie his way out in numerous ways. And the reality is that Tommy never got suspended for deflating footballs,” Brady Sr. added. “He got suspended because the court said that he could, Roger Goodell could do anything he wanted to do to any player for any reason whatsoever. That’s what happened. The NFL admitted they had no evidence on him.”
Earlier in the week, Goodell said it would be “an honor” to be able to hand the trophy to someone like Brady if the quarterback were to win his fifth Lombardi Trophy.
“It should be an honor because somebody that has Roger Goodell’s ethics doesn’t belong on any stage that Tom Brady is on,” the father echoed.
For more Patriots news, check out weei.com/patriots.
|Consistency of NFL’s discipline comes into question following Giants’ penalties for walkie-talkie violation||12.20.16 at 5:32 pm ET|
FOXBORO — The penalties are in.
The NFL has fined the Giants $150,000 and coach Ben McAdoo $50,000 for their roles in illegal walkie-talkie use during their Week 14 win over the Cowboys.
Also, the Giants’ fourth-round pick in next year’s draft will be moved to after compensatory picks in that round, but no more than 12 selection spots from where the Giants finished in the draft order in that round.
The NFL’s policy states “coaches are not permitted to hold a radio during a game because they will not be cut off when the Cutoff Switch Operator engages the cutoff.”
The Giants ran five plays with the walkie-talkie’s.
While the Giants were in fact penalized for the violation, it’s worth noting the lack of consistency from the NFL with discipline when it comes to on-field violations.
Everyone knows Tom Brady was suspended four games for his role in Deflategate and the Patriots were also fined $1 million and had to forfeit their first-round pick in the 2016 draft, as well as their fourth-round pick in the 2017 draft.
Last year Browns general manager Ray Farmer was suspended for the first four games for sending texts to personnel during games in 2014 and the team was fined $250,000, but did not lose any draft picks. Also last year, the NFL fined the Falcons $350,000 and took away their fifth-round selection in the 2016 draft for illegally pumping in crowd noise to their stadium.
While all this may seem minor to some, it is worth questioning what formula, if any, the league uses for discipline, as recent cases have proven it is all over the map.
|Mike Florio on OM&F: NFL protocol issues this week prove there was ‘persecution’ against Patriots with Deflategate||12.16.16 at 12:43 pm ET|
NBC Sports’ Mike Florio checked in with Ordway, Merloni & Fauria on Friday to discuss a few NFL matters, most notably Deflategate 2.0 and the Giants’ walkie-talkie situation. To hear the interview, go to the Ordway, Merloni & Fauria audio on demand page.
On Sunday, Fox Sports’ Jay Glazer reported the Giants went to the NFL after they were suspicious of the Steelers using under-inflated footballs in their matchup the week before. The league quickly put out a statement squashing the report and then during the week the owners of the two teams said it was “much ado about nothing” and Roger Goodell said no rules were broken.
Now, the Giants are reportedly being investigated for using walkie-talkies on the sidelines Sunday night against the Cowboys, which is illegal. Reportedly they are just facing a fine for the violation.
Florio noted how the two cases haven’t received much attention and what would have happened if the Patriots were involved?
“How is it then that it’s not a bigger deal and how big of a deal would it be if the it was the Patriots? I think those are fair questions,” Florio said. “I think there’s a lot of people out there that say it’s Patriots fans again, they are persecuted, but it’s getting to the point where there is a persecution. The way Deflategate was handled was so shameful and now they are running scared from it 23 months later.
“They are never going to be able to convince — I think anybody who looks at this in a fair-minded, critical way that it was handled property, it wasn’t handled properly. It wasn’t handled fairly. It was a rush to judgement that was made [by people] who didn’t understand how the Ideal Gas Law worked and they worked backwards to come to the conclusion they wanted to reach. I firmly believe nothing that anyone from the league says is ever going to change my mind. I probably will keep talking about it until I get myself in more trouble.”
Florio was asked why the media hasn’t been all over the events of this week like they were when it was Deflategate and the Patriots two years ago.
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