Roger Goodell Says the NFL Won’t Release PSI Results

Is that a tacit admission that Deflategate was as meaningless as Patriots fans thought it was?

Photo via AP

Photo via AP

When Roger Goodell announced in late July he was upholding Tom Brady’s four-game suspension for allegedly deflating footballs, he cited Brady’s destroyed cell phone as an implication of guilt.

It’s only appropriate to view Goodell’s admission that the NFL isn’t keeping any of the PSI data it collected this season in a similar light.

In an interview on The Rich Eisen Show Tuesday, Goodell was asked about whether the NFL would release the results of the random PSI tests its officials conducted at various games throughout the 2015 campaign. Not only did Goodell say those findings wouldn’t see the light of day, but he claimed the information was never even logged.

“What the league did this year was what we do with a lot of rules and policies designed to protect the integrity of the game, and that’s to create a deterrent effect,” Goodell said. “We do spot checks to prevent and make sure the clubs understand that we’re watching these issues. It wasn’t a research study. They simply were spot checks. There were no violations this year.”

Those comments from Goodell sound awfully different from what was written in the NFL’s operation manual in August, when the league first announced it was instituting random PSI checks this season. The operation manual says during halftime of each designated game, the footballs for both teams “will be inspected in the locker room by designated members of the officiating and security crews, and the PSI results will be measured and recorded.” Then it reads, “All game ball information will be recorded on the Referee’s Report, which must be submitted to the League office by noon on the day following the game.”

But according to Goodell, that data was never looked at in any discernible way. The NFL, which sullied the reputation of one of its greatest players ever and stripped the Patriots of a first-round pick over the alleged infraction, apparently has little interest in determining whether an infraction was actually committed.

Fortunately for those who are paying attention, a number of scientists have already done that work. There’s a consensus in the scientific community that the Ideal Gas Law, and not Patriots subterfuge, is the reason why Brady’s footballs lost air during last year’s AFC Championship. It’s likely the NFL discovered this, too, which is why it’s not releasing the numbers.

For Goodell, Deflategate was never about “protecting the integrity of the game.” It was about protecting himself. The league went all in against the Patriots last year and there’s no turning back. The NFL will never allow facts and information to trump its own narrative.