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Deflategate - an unnecessary fuss or more embarrassment for notorious Patriots?

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When the news broke last season of allegations of cheating inside the New England Patriots organisation in a game vs the Indianapolis Colts, it was like a firework; big, attention grabbing, and gone in a flash.

Most people assumed they had done it (not the first scandal associated with the team from Massachusetts) but also wondered what the big deal was with balls being ever so slightly deflated - every kid growing up would have played with a flat ball at one time or another and the effect on game quality is minimal, particularly with such minute changes.

Then, after a week or so, when the Superbowl came and went, everyone seemed to forget about it and instead talked about the thrilling finish to the biggest American sports event of the year (and perhaps the worst play call in American sports history).


And that brings us nicely on to this week, when the findings of the Wells Report (an official investigation into the allegations) were made public. To briefly summarise the 243 page report: "they probably did it, Brady would have known."

The key concept here is that Brady would have known about the 'dastardly' plot. Now this may not seem so important if not for the detail that when the accusations were first made, Brady wholeheartedly and repeatedly denied any knowledge of it or indeed any wrongdoing.

So this is where many people take issue - not the deflating of game balls, but the lies told by the organisation's star QB and the deceptive way he attempted to prevent any punishment falling his way.

It has since been announced that the franchise will have to pay a fine of $1 million as well as losing their first round draft pick in 2016 and their fourth rounder the year after. This is on top of a four game suspension for talisman Brady.

Is it right?

But is the penalty really fair? Well, did they cheat? Most likely, yes. Was it really that big a deal? No. But lying can't be tolerated, so although I believe the penalty on the franchise is harsh, I completely support the NFL's decision to penalise and suspend Brady.

We do not want to teach supporters that cheating is right and that cheaters don't get punished and the only way to do this is by punishing the offenders.

So kudos to the NFL, for once you have managed to save face for the sport in a situation that was never going to be unanimously supported by the sporting world. I can only hope this kind of farce is never repeated.

One last point. Who does Brady return to the field against...that's right, the Colts. You couldn't make it up.

NFL fans: Do you support the league's tough stance on Tom Brady and the Patriots? Have your say in the comments section below...

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New England Patriots
Tom Brady

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