The NFL has announced its punishment of New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady for his alleged involvement in the Deflategate scandal earlier this year. He will be suspended for the first four games of the 2015-2016 season without pay. That is twice as long as the two-game suspension Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice received for beating his fiancée.
In addition, the Patriots will be fined $1 million, lose their 2016 first-round pick and their 4th round pick in 2017.
BREAKING: Tom Brady suspended without pay for first four games of 2015 regular season, NFL announces
— NBC Nightly News (@NBCNightlyNews) May 11, 2015
BREAKING: Tom Brady has been suspended four games. @Patriots lose 2016 first-round pick, 2017 4th round pick, fined $1 million dollars.
— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) May 11, 2015
The NFL provided the following statement on the decision Monday afternoon:
“Quarterback Tom Brady will be suspended without pay for the first four games of the 2015 regular season for conduct detrimental to the integrity of the NFL. Brady may participate in all off-season, training camp and pre-season activities, including pre-season games.”
Brady was asked about the NFL investigation that found he was “generally aware” of the team’s plans to deflate footballs before the AFC championship win against the Indianapolis Colts in January during an interview on Thursday. The quarterback would only say that he had not had “much time to digest it fully” yet and would address the allegations at a later date.
UPDATE — 5:57 p.m. ET: The discrepancy between the punishments for Brady and Rice were not lost on many who reacted on Twitter:
Ray Rice beats wife on video: 2 game suspension.
Brady deflates footballs and lies about it: 4 game suspension.
NFL is doing a bang up job.
— Josh Jordan (@NumbersMuncher) May 11, 2015
So, Ray Rice knocks his girlfriend unconscious = 2 games. Tom Brady maybe "generally aware" of deflated footballs = 4 games. Nice job, NFL
— Jonathan Lemire (@JonLemire) May 11, 2015
Tom Brady gets 4 game suspension for allegedly deflating footballs.
Ray Rice only got 2 for battering a woman?
Solid work NFL. #FreeBrady
— Charles Thorp (@charlesthorp) May 11, 2015
Keep in mind, Brady is being suspended 4 games for #DeflateGate, while Ray Rice originally got a 2 game suspension for beating his wife
— Matt Essert (@mattessert) May 11, 2015
Tom Brady gets 4 games for not cooperating with "deflategate" investigation. Ray Rice initially gets 2 games for slugging his fiancee. #NFL
— Marlow Stern (@MarlowNYC) May 11, 2015
So the NFL had a video of Ray Rice incident and he got 2 games…Tom Brady was "more probably than not" deflating and gets 4?
— Joel Klatt (@joelklatt) May 11, 2015
By suspending Tom Brady for 4 games, 2x as long as Ray Rice's initial suspension, the NFL sent a clear message: No one alters our footballs.
— Marc Lamont Hill (@marclamonthill) May 11, 2015
For the record, and let's remember this: Brady's "maybe he knew about it?" suspension is twice as long as the original Ray Rice suspension.
— Ken Tremendous (@KenTremendous) May 11, 2015
Even Fox News’ Greta Van Susteren weighed in with this question, though her numbers were a little off:
Tom Brady got 3 game suspension for deflate gate;Rice got only 2 for beating woman #fair?
— Greta Van Susteren (@greta) May 11, 2015
UPDATE — 6:13 p.m. ET: According to NBC’s Peter Alexander, Tom Brady plans to appeal the suspension:
JUST IN: Tom Brady's camp tells me they will appeal 4-game suspension through NFLPA.
— Peter Alexander (@PeterAlexander) May 11, 2015
UPDATE — 9:15 p.m. ET: Patriots owner Robert Kraft has issued the following supportive statement about the Brady suspension:
“Despite our conviction that there was no tampering with footballs, it was our intention to accept any discipline levied by the league.
Today’s punishment, however, far exceeded any reasonable expectation. It was based completely on circumstantial rather than hard or conclusive evidence.
We are humbled by the support the New England Patriots have received from our fans throughout the world. We recognize our fans’ concerns regarding the NFL’s penalties and share in their disappointment in how this one-sided investigation was handled, as well as the dismissal of the scientific evidence supported by the Ideal Gas Law in the final report.
Tom Brady has our unconditional support. Our belief in him has not wavered.”
[Photo via NFL]
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