|New England Patriots at Washington Redskins 08/28/09 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
We learn a lot about a person when they are under fire so it has been interesting to see how Tom Brady has handled himself during this time where his reputation is being called into question. I believe his silence since the Wells Report went public is the only response that makes sense. There is nothing he could say that would sway his critics or his supporters.
My opinion is that this has little to do with Tom Brady and more to do with the NFL and the public perception of the league and Commissioner Roger Goodell. Both Goodell and the NFL have been lambasted for the handling of the Ray Rice domestic abuse situation and other domestic issues since. There were even those who thought the handling of the situation would cost the Commissioner his job.
There is nothing that would earn Commissioner Goodell a bigger PR boost in every NFL city outside of New England than a harsh penalty for Tom Brady and the Patriots. In a day and age where nothing is more important than the court of public opinion, Patriots fans should brace themselves for the worst.
The excerpts below From ESPN Boston's Mike Reiss outline exactly why the only possible motive that makes sense for the NFL is that they are in search of a much-needed PR Boost:
"I truly can't believe what the commissioner has done to the legacy and reputation of one of the greatest quarterbacks and ambassadors in the history of the game -- all over air pressure in a football and without definitive proof he had anything to do with it."Other similar situations regarding the handling of footballs by other NFL teams from Reiss:
- "I go back to the Vikings-Panthers game from November, with teams illegally heating footballs on the sideline and simply getting a warning from the NFL"
- "I go back to the Chargers using an illegal sticky substance on towels in 2012 and getting fined $25,000, and likewise wonder how we got to this point with the Patriots and underinflated footballs"
The conclusion from Reiss is exactly where I am at:
"Put the three situations together and only one requires a full-fledged investigation that will cost owners millions of dollars? In the interest of fairness, what am I missing?"