BOSTON (CBS) — In an interview on CBS This Morning Thursday, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said Monday’s court ruling that reinstated Tom Brady’s four-game suspension had nothing to do with the footballs that were allegedly deflated in January 2014.
“Well this wasn’t about the actual violation,” Goodell said, after being asked if the endless DeflateGate saga was worth the $20 million the league has spent on legal fees related to it over the past year. “This was about the rights we had negotiated in our collective bargaining agreement, that we had in our collective bargaining agreement, and that we wanted to make sure we retained.”
On Monday, Tom Brady’s four-game suspension for his alleged role in a ball-deflation scheme prior to the AFC Championship Game in January 2014 was reinstated by the three-judge panel of the Second Circuit. Reports say Brady wants to appeal that court’s decision.
When asked if he felt vindicated by the Second Circuit’s decision, Goodell said that he thought the original decision to suspend Brady was correct.
“This is a decision we reached last summer,” Goodell said. “It was the right decision in according with the Court of Appeals. I think this is the end of the matter. We’re moving on and focusing on the draft.”
“The court was very clear on the fact that the suspension was reinstated, that it should not have been overturned in the first place last summer by the District Court,” he added.
Goodell also responded to Drew Brees’s comments that he’s “not going to trust any league-led investigation when it comes to anything,” noting that an independent counsel conducted the investigation into the allegedly deflated footballs, and that a hearing process agreed upon by the players and the league took place.
“There was an independent investigation on this, and an independent report that was presented to me,” Goodell said. “And that’s what we based the judgement off of. And then we had a hearing, we had a process that is articulated in our collective bargaining agreement that has been there for several decades.”
Goodell said he has spoken to Robert and Jonathan Kraft, and that he thought everyone was “ready to move forward.”
WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Carl Stevens reports