Federal Judge Rules In Tom Brady Flavor In The NFL Deflategate Controversy
|Federal Judge Rules In Tom Brady Flavor In The NFL Deflategate Controversy|
U.S. District Judge Richard M. Berman said NFL commissioner Roger Goodell went too far in affirming punishment of the Super Bowl-winning quarterback, criticizing him for dispensing "his own brand of industrial justice." Brady has insisted he played no role in a conspiracy to deflate footballs below the allowable limit at last season's AFC Championship Game.
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Roger Goodell speaks-out
"As I have said during this process and throughout his Patriots career, Tom Brady is a classy person of the highest integrity. He represents everything that is great about this game and this league," Patriots owner Robert Kraft said in a statement. "Yet, with absolutely no evidence of any actions of wrongdoing by Tom in the Wells report, the lawyers at the league still insisted on imposing and defending unwarranted and unprecedented discipline. Judge Richard Berman understood this and we are greatly appreciative of his thoughtful decision that was delivered today. Now, we can return our focus to the game on the field."
Berman's ruling, however, will not end the dispute; the league appealed the decision later Thursday.
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collectively bargained responsibility to protect the integrity of the game. The commissioner's responsibility to secure the competitive fairness of our game is a paramount principle, and the league and our 32 clubs will continue to pursue a path to that end."
NFL Players Association executive director DeMaurice Smith said the ruling proves that the contract with the NFL doesn't grant Goodell "the authority to be unfair, arbitrary and misleading.''
"While the CBA grants the person who occupies the position of Commissioner the ability to judiciously and fairly exercise the designated power of that position, the union did not agree to attempts to unfairly, illegally exercise that power, contrary to what the NFL has repeatedly and wrongfully claimed," Smith said.