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Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Trying to Avoid A Sack


Like a mob boss, Tom Brady ordered his underling to destroy evidence of the crime. Or maybe like a former President of the United States.

Roger Clemens at one point tried to throw his wife under the bus.  Lance Armstrong seemingly threw everyone under the bus.  

It is not so much the wrongdoing, but what happens thereafter that fuels the fire. If Clemens, Armstrong or even Nixon had quickly admitted the error of their ways, mouthed a lukewarm mea culpa, and asked for understanding, forgiveness and the right of redemption, who knows how differently their tales would have been written.

And as for Tom Brady, there is a long tolerated and even condoned practice in sports sanctioning whatever competitive advantage you can obtain, up to a certain threshold. And perhaps Mr. Brady slipped over that line. But had he admitted to a vague awareness of the circumstances, professed a misunderstanding of its wrongdoing and not had an underling tasked with a throw away akin to a pass into the stands in the face of onrushing linemen, almost certainly he would not be faced with the level of punishment now imposed. It was a very bad audible called at the line by a quarterback who saw a blitz coming. In trying to avoid the sack, Mr. Brady only incurred a penalty for intentional grounding.

Alex Rodriguez tried to buy up the evidence of his drug usage. He sued everyone in the chain of command, alienating his team, the league and those who wanted, somewhere deep in their heart, to be able to forgive his trepasses.  In the final analysis this only made a bad situation that much worse.

Mr. Brady's mistake was not so much in throwing deflated footballs against an overmatched opponent, but in everything that he did thereafter. And his punishment, even in the stated opinion of the Commissioner, fits not so much the crime as its aftermath.

1 comment:

Bruce Egert said...

Total bullshit. Brady's finding of liability or guilt is based on false assumptions and indirect hearsay. Brady says he destroyed the phone AFTER his brilliant attorneys told him that his phone would never be needed by the league. The NFL has many problems with abusive players, concussions and orthopedic injuries. Suspending its No. 1 star-player is designed to strike fear into the other players of lower quality who tend to have an "outlaw" attitude toward rules. Goodell is empowered to run his league as an autocracy and making an example of Tom Brady with insufficient evidence will go down as the first of many desperate acts to retain NFL football as our national pastime. But, I am afraid that brain injuries and orthopedic abnormalities will soon eclipse a deflated football. And that's really too bad for me. I am a big fan of football and a NY Jets season's pass holder. I would prefer that the league focus on its real problems and not make Tom Brady the poster-child for being convicted in a Kangaroo Court.