Tom Brady’s name has been dragged through the mud since the Deflategate story broke 14 months ago, but New England Patriots president Jonathan Kraft is sticking up for his quarterback at the NFL Annual Meeting.
Brady was suspended four games as part of the Patriots’ Deflategate punishment, but the ban was vacated by U.S. District Court Judge Richard Berman last September. The NFL appealed Berman’s decision to U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit Judges Robert Katzmann, Barrington Parker and Denny Chin earlier this month. A decision on whether to uphold Berman’s ruling is expected before the 2016 NFL season.
?Tom Brady is the poster child for everything that is right,? Kraft said to CSNNE.com’s Tom E. Curran on Tuesday. ?Not just with the NFL, but with professional sports in general and why we wouldn?t be looking to be putting somebody like him on a platform and effectively showcase him as everything that is great about a professional athlete.
“Both in terms of his work ethic, his discipline on the field, how he is as a father, as a husband and what he does in the community, he is everything that is great about the NFL and professional sports and to see what has happened to him, at least for me personally, as somebody who is fortunate enough to know him and have him as a friend, that is probably even more disheartening to me because he doesn?t deserve it.
?And you throw the first-round pick into it, it gets very frustrating and very angry and disappointing, but at some point you have to realize, you have to turn the energy and attention towards things that will be productive. The league meetings start really the 2016 season and for us, we have to go out and have a very successful year.?
Patriots owner Robert Kraft announced he wrote a letter to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell with hopes to recoup the team’s 2016 first-round draft pick lost in the Deflategate discipline. Goodell said Wednesday morning he will not return the draft pick.
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