The latest twist in the ever developing deflate-gate saga could be a significant one.
As reported by Fox Sports, the NFL have apparently identified a key suspect in their search to unearth just exactly what went on with the game balls supplied by the New England Patriots for the recent AFC Championship game vs the Indianapolis Colts.
Video footage has reportedly surfaced, and been seen by those investigating the scandal, showing a New England Patriots locker-room attendant transferring footballs from the officials' locker room into a separate room in the Pats' Gillette Stadium - then taking them onto the gridiron.
The NFL is, as you would imagine, very keen to decipher whether this employee is guilty of any wrongdoing. Apparently though the individual in question is amongst one of the 40-plus people who have already been interviewed by the league since the accusations were levelled last Monday.
While the NFL is yet to offer specifics on exactly what they have discovered so far, they did, in an official statement released at the end of last week, confirm that several of the balls provided by the Patriots for the first half of the Colts game were deemed to be under the legal pressure required.
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At the time of writing it is unclear whether the attendant now under scrutiny has done anything out of the norm, or whether his moving of game balls is a regular occurrence for all games.
No rules broken
Patriots head coach Bill Belichick has vehemently denied any wrong doing on his part, claiming to be "100 percent confident" that the franchise has not broken any NFL rules.
In a Saturday press conference he even attempted to offer an explanation based on temperature affecting ball pressure. This theory has since been brought into question by Wilson, the providers of official NFL football.
This latest twist in deflate-gate though does at least offer an insight into what the NFL have found to date. Until said footage is released however, and the individual in question spoken too, the outcome remains decidedly murky.
Should the attendant be found to have deflated the balls the New England Patriots are going to have a hard time explaining why a lower ranked employee brought it upon himself (without any direction from above) to make an alteration to such a crucial part of the game.