Welcome to the newest edition of The Why. “Why was Tom Brady really suspended?” you ask? Good question. Timely too. (New information has surfaced that sheds some light on how the NFL folks really think.)
Sure, everyone thinks they know the answer but the truth is a bit more complicated. Still, while yours truly does know a few professional athletes and cheerleaders, he rarely watches sports because when he does his teams lose. (Besides, he’s more of a specialist on indoor athletics.)
Things are not so cut and dry. Think about it, Ray Rice punches out his fiancée and initially only gets suspended two days. Brady assaulted no one but was suspended four days –twice that length.
So why did Brady get a punishment much worse than what most people expected for deflating footballs? Why was Tom Brady really suspended? Our friend Rodger Sherman, writer for SB Nation, says that “in the NFL’s eyes, (Brady’s) punishment wasn’t actually for deflating footballs.”
There is already a punishment on the NFL books for screwing with game balls. It doesn’t matter. The fact that the findings from the DeflateGate investigation are currently being questioned also means nothing in this case.
Sherman confirms that the “official explanation” of Brady’s suspension is as follows:
“Quarterback Tom Brady (is) suspended without pay for the first four games of the 2015 regular season for conduct detrimental to the integrity of the NFL.”
Sherman notes that this is “the clause in Article 46 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement – ‘commissioner discipline’ – and . . . means the punishment is “up to Roger Goodell” and “it applies to both Brady’s cheating and his lack of cooperation.” (Maybe Brady’s mommy and daddy never told him: “If you lie it’s only going to make things worse.”)
Furthermore, Sherman reports on a letter written by NFL executive vice president Troy Vincent that states Brady was suspended because he failed “to cooperate . . . with the investigation”, refused “to produce any relevant electronic evidence . . . despite being offered . . . safeguards . . . to protect unrelated personal information, and by providing testimony that . . . was not plausible and contradicted by other evidence.” Vincent also said that Brady’s actions constituted “conduct detrimental to the integrity of and public confidence in . . . professional football.”
Sherman agrees with us saying that by punishing Brady for his “failure to cooperate”, the NFL “found a legitimate reason to drop the hammer.” He also notes that the NFL could’ve either given Brady “the tiny punishment the crime committed mandated” or send a message “that even a marquee player on Roger Goodell’s friend’s team can’t get away with lying to Roger Goodell.”
Ah well, it could be worse. Brady could have been suspended from the last four games of the season. Yeah, consider that football fans.
Why was Tom Brady really suspended? Now you know.
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