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Patriots fan starts crowdfunding drive to pay for Deflategate fine

Patriots fan starts crowdfunding drive to pay for Deflategate fine
New England Patriots Tom Brady looks to pass during a game against the Indianapolis Colts in November 2014. Brady was suspended four games by the NFL on Monday. (Mike McGinnis / Associated Press)

In addition to suspending Tom Brady and taking away two future draft picks, the New England Patriots were fined $1 million by the NFL on Monday for their alleged role in the Deflategate scandal.

But the biggest fine in franchise history isn't deterring some of the Patriots' loyal fans from giving back to the team.

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Michael J. Whitman, a Patriots fan in Spokane, Wash., has started a crowdfunding drive to collect money to help pay the $1 million fine.

Whitman explained his intentions on his GoFundMe.com donations page: "We obviously know we won't reach One Million Dollars, however we do believe the fine is bull ... and want to help anyway we can So whatever is donated will be donated to the New England Patriots in help with the fine!

"As we venture with this, we will do frequent updates to show progression of this! If enough is made to make the travel, we will fly down there (on our own expenses) and deliver a check in person!"

As of Tuesday morning, Whitman's donors had pledged more than $2,500. He has a long way to go, but he has plenty of folks who've expressed their support with $5, $10, $20 and even $50 donations.

While it's unclear whether the Patriots would be willing to accept the money from one of their biggest fans, its seems certain team owner Robert Kraft will still be saddled with most of the bill.

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