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Ted Wells: “More probable than not” Patriots manipulated balls

Tom Brady


The NFL has released the long-awaited #DeflateGate report, and the short version of the findings by Ted Wells is that the Patriots seem to have done something funny here.

The full report was released moments ago. In his summary, Wells writes that irregularities were found in the balls used in the AFC Championship Game.

“For the reasons described in this Report, and after a comprehensive investigation, we have concluded that, in connection with the AFC Championship Game, it is more probable than not that New England Patriots personnel participated in violations of the Playing Rules and were involved in a deliberate effort to circumvent the rules,” Wells concluded. “In particular, we have concluded that it is more probable than not that Jim McNally (the Officials Locker Room attendant for the Patriots) and John Jastremski (an equipment assistant for the Patriots) participated in a deliberate effort to release air from Patriots game balls after the balls were examined by the referee.

“Based on the evidence, it also is our view that it is more probable than not that Tom Brady (the quarterback for the Patriots) was at least generally aware of the inappropriate activities of McNally and Jastremski involving the release of air from Patriots game balls.”

That’s a huge finding, particularly as it relates to Brady, who has previously avoided adding much fuel to the fire.

We’ll be going through the full report this afternoon and bringing you the latest on a complicated story.