Roger Goodell could have a significant amount of power stripped from him as it pertains to NFL discipline. As part of this potential power move by the NFLPA, the NFL could potentially settle with Tom Brady out of court in the Deflategate case, which would likely reduce Brady’s discipline significantly.
Matthew Futterman of the Wall Street Journal detailed these issues thoroughly (paid subscription required). He reports that a deal of this magnitude wouldn’t exactly be a quick process.
However, along with Goodell losing a significant amount of power, NFLPA director DeMaurice Smith believes the league could cease pursuing litigation against Brady (and others) for his alleged role in the deflated football scandal which occurred early in 2015.
“I can’t imagine there is any appetite [from the players] to agree with any proposal that doesn’t wrap up all the litigation,” Smith told the WSJ. “We can either continue to litigate or reach a collectively bargained conclusion.”
Brady recently won a big battle in court over the mess when Judge Richard Berman vacated his four-game suspension.
The NFL took the case back to court, however, and in its fight to prove Brady wrong may have actually lied in court to bolster its argument (more on that here).
While the Patriots might be bracing for Brady to receive his suspension, more and more it appears that, regardless of Brady’s innocence or guilt in the matter, the NFL has botched the investigation and litigation of the Deflategate case from the get-go.
With that in mind, the best thing the league could to might be to just let it die and settle out of court.
This was a predicted result by many who cover the sport when things started rolling along. Now, more than a year later, it’s beginning to look like it will end with a whimper and a huge PR blunder for the league.