NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE ; NFL: No Timetable for Resolving Deflategate

By Ulman, Howard | The Charleston Gazette (Charleston, WV), January 24, 2015 | Go to article overview

NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE ; NFL: No Timetable for Resolving Deflategate


Ulman, Howard, The Charleston Gazette (Charleston, WV)


The league said Friday that evidence shows the Patriots used underinflated footballs during the first half of the AFC championship game Sunday night against the Indianapolis Colts. It issued a statement that the Patriots have pledged full cooperation and have given the league information it requested and made personnel available upon request. Quarterback Tom Brady said Thursday afternoon he had not been contacted at that point.

The NFL said it began its investigation Sunday night and expects full cooperation from other clubs. It has hired an investigatory company to help in reviewing electronic and video information.

Patriots owner Robert Kraft said investigators were in Foxborough for three days this week after he received a letter from the league on Monday informing him of the probe.

"We provided access to every full- and part-time employee the league's representatives requested to speak with and produced every communication device that they requested to search, he said. "I very much support the league's desire to conduct a complete investigation.

The Patriots are preparing to meet the defending champion Seattle Seahawks in the Super Bowl on Feb. 1 in Glendale, Arizona.

The league said when it is able to come to conclusions, they will be shared publicly.

"Over the past several days, nearly 40 interviews have been conducted, including of Patriots personnel, game officials, and third parties with relevant information and expertise, the statement said.

"We have obtained and are continuing to obtain additional information, including video and other electronic information and physical evidence, the statement said.

NFL Executive Vice President Jeff Pash and Ted Wells of the law firm of Paul Weiss are leading the probe.

Wells was the investigator in the Miami Dolphins bullying scandal. His report last February detailed widespread harassment in the team's locker room that extended beyond the two players at the center of the probe. It said guard John Jerry and center Mike Pouncey followed Richie Incognito's lead in harassing offensive lineman Jonathan Martin.

The NFL requires game balls to be inflated to between 12 1/2 and 13 1/2 pounds per square inch.

It wants to find out why footballs were underinflated during the first half and whether "deliberate action caused it.

"We have not made any judgments on these points and will not do so until we have concluded our investigation and considered all of the relevant evidence, the league said. …

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