New England quarterback
The two Patriots staff members involved in the deflation footballs before last season's
Brady, 37, a two-time
In January, four days after the
"I didn't alter the ball in any way," he said. "I have no knowledge of any wrongdoing."
Not only is Brady a face of the NFL, but his stardom transcends sports. He is married to supermodel Gisele Bundchen and has a net worth of $120 million, according to Celebritynetworth.com.
New Orleans Coach
Of course, Brady's alleged transgression doesn't rise to the level of a dogfighting ring or paying for players to injure opponents (a practice the Saints still deny.) But the NFL takes seriously any suggestion a team is bending the rules to gain an advantage. At that January news conference, a reporter asked Brady if he was a cheater.
"I don't believe so," Brady said. "I've always played within the rules."
Evidently, that's not a universal sentiment in the NFL. The Wells report revealed that the league was advised a day before the AFC title game that at least some opponents believed the Patriots had deflated game balls before.
Ryan Grigson, general manager of the
Wrote Sullivan: "As far as the gameballs are concerned it is well known around the league that after the Patriots gameballs are checked by the officials and brought out for game usage the ballboys for the patriots will let out some air with a ball needle because their quarterback likes a smaller football so he can grip it better, it would be great if someone would be able to check the air in the game balls as the game goes on so that they don't get an illegal advantage."
Prior to the Wells report, the public information was that the NFL didn't learn about the deflated-football issue until a Colts defender intercepted a Brady pass in the first half.
According to the Wells report, Brady appeared for a requested interview but declined to provide any documents or electronic information – including texts and emails – that were requested. Wells said he limited those requests to texts and emails related only to the subject matter of the investigation.
But Brady's agent, Don Yee, said the scope that Wells was seeking was "actually very, very wide."
“I probably should have made the letter public that we received from the NFL’s lawyers,” Yee said in an interview with CNN’s "AC360" with