Even though Tom Brady won the “Deflategate” debate, the Patriots still lost. Last fall, the NFL stripped the Patriots of a first round and a fourth round pick in the 2016 NFL draft. As first reported by ESPN Boston’s Mike Reiss, Robert Kraft, owner of the New England Patriots has asked Roger Goodell for the reinstatement of the Patriots’ first round draft pick. Goodell, in response to “Deflategate,” fined the Patriots and confiscated the Patriots’ picks. Goodell had said that he would reconsider if new evidence was brought forth. Robert Kraft was quoted saying:
“I personally wrote a letter to the commissioner responding to his comment that if any new facts came up, he would take them into consideration. I personally believe that when the league made their decision they did not factor in the Ideal Gas Law. They admitted that publicly. They had a full year of being able to observe Tom Brady play with all the rules of whatever the NFL was, and make any judgments there. We have laid it out pretty straightforward and now it’s up to them to decide.”
At this point, the Patriots first pick in the upcoming NFL draft is 60th overall. It is very difficult for teams to maintain success in the NFL without strong evaluation and execution in the NFL draft. Last fall, Robert Kraft called Goodell’s decision “the harshest penalty in the history of the NFL.” Many think though Goodell has some sort of agenda as he has been very unusually firm with the Patriots throughout the process.
It seems unlikely for change to occur from the commissioner, who Richard Sherman recently called “just a suit” when talking about the new rule changes Goodell wants to implement in the NFL. but Sherman even continued to say “it sounds like something somebody who’s never played the game would say.” Similarly, there is a motion with the NFL and the NFLPA to lesson Goodell’s power to discipline player’s off the field incidents. It is possible that this recent public pressure at the expense of Roger Goodell could force his hand to loosen the penalty on the Patriots in hopes to recover what is a poor public image. It is difficult to predict the final outcome as Goodell has been inconsistent with the way he has handled issues, but Robert Kraft and the Patriots organization hopes things will fall their way.