The NFL has finally reprimanded Tom Brady and the New England Patriots for their participation in the now notorious “Deflategate” on Monday after Ted Wells released his findings on the case last week. Wells stated in his report that “it was more probable than not” that Brady knew of the actions taking place by two team staff members, Jim McNally and John Jastremski. NFL executive vice president Troy Vincent served the punishment with a letter written to Brady.
"“With respect to your particular involvement, the report established that there is substantial and credible evidence to conclude you were at least generally aware of the actions of the Patriots’ employees involved in the deflation of the footballs and that it was unlikely that their actions were done without your knowledge,” Vincent wrote."
Brady will be suspended for four games without pay, and the team will forfeit its first-round pick in 2016, a 2017 fourth-round pick and was fined $1 million. The investigation came about after the Indianapolis Colts complained to league officials about the balls the Patriots were using in January’s AFC Championship game.
More from Baltimore Ravens
- Baltimore Ravens: Will this be Breshad Perriman’s last game as a Raven?
- Baltimore Ravens: Why RG3 Will Not Make the Ravens’ 53-Man Roster
- Baltimore Ravens have to make a decision on resting key offensive players
- Baltimore Ravens Cornerback Situation With Jimmy Smith Likely Suspended
- Top 5 Baltimore Ravens to Get on Your Fantasy Football Team
Everyone outside of the New England area wanted the Patriots and Brady to be punished. We can applaud the NFL for actually issuing some kind of penalty. Losing arguably the best quarterback in the league for four weeks is a big blow. The $1 million fine is the highest in league history. You can argue amongst yourselves if the ruling was too light or too harsh. That is not the point of this article.
There are some fans that believe the under inflated balls were also used in the AFC Divisional game against the Baltimore Ravens as well. We will never actually know if the balls used in the divisional game were deflated too. To my knowledge, the league never investigated the balls used the week before. Could the Patriots have cheated in this game? Let me quote Wells once again: “it was more probable than not.”
The discipline has been handed out, and now, it is time for Ravens fans to let it all go.
Roger Goodell keeps preaching about the integrity of the game, but the punishments haven’t been equal. The Ravens can argue that Ray Rice was suspended indefinitely for his domestic violence. Sure, it was a cowardly act by a man who deserved every punishment he got. However, what he did does not alter the results on the field. You can make a case that this is more damaging to the NFL than any off-the-field issue.
We can bicker all we want about how it all went down. The fact is the NFL is not taking that title away. They aren’t going to follow the NCAA’s ridiculous approach of stripping players, coaches and teams of trophies, titles and wins. The Patriots are still the reigning Super Bowl champs and they aren’t changing the result of the games against the Colts or Ravens.
The only legitimate gripe that Ravens fans can possibly have is that the the rivaled Pittsburgh Steelers are going to face that team without Brady. Jimmy Garoppolo, the Patriots second-round pick in 2014, has thrown just 27 passes in the NFL. They say the game isn’t won on paper, but you would think that without Brady, the Steelers should have this game in hand. Pittsburgh should start the season 1-0, and with the Ravens traveling to Denver in Week 1, it’s possible the Ravens are trailing in the AFC North right out of the gate.
The only thing fans can hope for is that somehow Bill Belichick doesn’t pull off some sort of miracle and has his team with a winning record after those four weeks. If the Patriots start off the season. 0-4 or 1-3, the punishment is justified.
It’s time to forget about Deflategate in Baltimore. We have our own issues to deal with.
More from The Baltimore Wire
- What other Baltimore Orioles Offseason Storylines will you be interested in seeing?
- Baltimore Orioles to Face Numerous Playoff Contenders Down the Stretch
- Baltimore Orioles Showing Encouraging Signs During Recent Wins
- The Baltimore Orioles and the Expanded September Roster
- Maryland Football: Terps honor Jordan McNair, beat Longhorns 34-29