Dino, Gerry and Kirk react to Judge Berman's ruling and discuss what it means for Roger Goodell.



Steve Serby, New York PostTeflon Tom Brady got himself a free pass when his four-game NFL suspension was overturned Thursday.

Just because Judge Richard M. Berman ruled in favor of your appeal does not mean that you are not guilty in the court of Roger Goodell and the NFL, or in the court of public opinion.

If you are not convinced this signals Vindigate for Teflon Tom — and you should not be — then you have no other conclusion to reach than:

Crime pays. In this case, the crime of cheating.

The truth is Teflon Tom lied about his balls, and virtually everyone outside New England knows it. …

Balls well that ends well. But Deflategate doesn’t end well with Teflon Tom and Patriots Nation celebrating Elategate.

Gregg Doyel, IndyStar Don’t do it. Don’t fall for the DeflateGate magic trick, the illusion that the rest of the country is falling for today. …

Not here, not in Indianapolis, the one city in America that has the NFL team that was denied the right to a fair football game in the AFC championship against Tom Brady and the New England Patriots. …

You see the illusion, right? The left hand is over there snapping and smirking and destroying a cell phone while the right hand is reaching — has already reached, and been caught doing it — into the Colts’ pocket and stealing their chance at a fair fight in the AFC title game. …

The carnival is DeflateGate, and while Tom Brady was preening like the fat lady for eyeballs, the real rides were over and the cleanup had begun and the NFL had found the Patriots guilty of cheating the Colts.

And the Patriots agreed. …

Let’s not be stupid — let’s not be like some folks in the New England area, OK? — and deny that the other side has some merit, even as we hold firm to our overall point: The Colts got cheated. The Patriots got caught.

Tom Brady gets to play? Fine, whatever. You ask me, he’s guilty and should sit out four games. …

Let Brady use this victory to reaffirm his innocence.

Doesn’t change what happened Jan. 18. Doesn’t change that the Colts lost their biggest game of the season. Doesn’t change that the Patriots cheated.

And it doesn’t change that everybody knows it.

Bill Plaschke, Los Angeles TimesThe only thing worse than deflated footballs is an inflated celebration over their apparent irrelevance. Yet such parties were being thrown throughout New England on Thursday when a federal judge lifted Patriots quarterback Tom Brady’s four-game suspension for his role in Deflategate.

No pun intended, but get a grip.

Just because the NFL was dirty, doesn’t mean Tom Brady was clean.

Just because Goodell was condemned doesn’t mean Brady was exonerated. …

At halftime of January’s AFC championship game between the Patriots and Indianapolis Colts, some of the Patriots’ footballs were discovered to have been underinflated, which is against the rules and makes them easier to handle. …

The act of deflating a football obviously can’t be compared to steroid use, but in many places, the lingering effects on Brady will be the same.

Not in New England, of course. On a day when the region’s cheating quarterback was allowed back in the lineup because of the bumbling NFL, there were 30 digital billboards around town blazing with one word, “Vindicated.”

False advertising.

This is really alarming. I’ve understood for some time now that Deflategate Derangement Syndrome is a serious disease. For months now we’ve seen its debilitating effects. I’ve watched otherwise semi-intelligent sportswriters driven mad by it. Seen how it turns them into shadows of their former selves. Makes them blind to the truth. Gives them hallucinations. Takes away all their cognitive abilities. Robs them of their sense of reason. Eats away at all their higher-level thinking until they wither into babbling, incoherent, emotional cripples who no longer can separate reality from their delusions and only believe what they’re told by a national laughingstock like Roger Goodell.

But I had no idea DDS was this bad.

The other symptoms were bad enough. And I’d hoped that once Tom Brady was vindicated, it would run its course. Instead, the disease has metastasized into something much, much worse. This latest strain its absolutely terrifying. DDS now apparently causes its victims to lose all their reading comprehension, develop an irrational hatred of New Englanders and gives them a sort of Tourette’s where they make really terrible puns.

It’s tragic. You read these three poor guys I just cited and you have to empathize. I’ll bet Deflategate Derangement Syndrome has them so divorced from reality they believe it all began with D’Qwell Jackson intercepting that Brady pass in the AFC title game and saying “Gee, this ball feels kinda squishy …” That’s a complete fiction, and the truth that the Ravens and Colts worked with Mike Kensil and others to run a sting has been proven both in writing and their own comments. But believing the story is a classic symptom of advanced DDS.

For these guys and thousands of other writers like them, I’m afraid it’s far worse. So my sympathies go out to all of them. I hope in the months to come they can find a cure and beat this thing, because I know the sight of Tom Brady taking the field for all 16 games is going to be more than they can bear. It’s especially sad when you realize these poor afflicted sportswriters are making less sense about Framegate than this guy:


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Blog Author: 
Jerry Thornton
















In his world-changing essay “The American Crisis,” Thomas Paine wrote, “Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph.” Well in this crisis, Patriots fans put their cleverness, creativity and talent to work and did conquer tyranny. They did win a glorious triumph.

I’ve said throughout the Framegate ordeal that no fan base in the nation is better at the Internet than Pats fans. And at no time did the fans disappoint. They responded to every development in this sordid mess with the best photoshops, GIFs, memes and posts social media has to offer. Chris Voldemortensen might not understand how this Twitter thing works, but New Englanders do. And to the surprise of no one, #BradysFree Day was their finest moment. Well done, everybody.


DraftKings Kick off this football season with the biggest fantasy football contest ever on DraftKings! Prizes worth $10 million are up for grabs, including $2 million for first AND $1 million for second! PLAY IN THE WEEK 1 MILLIONAIRE MAKER, CLICK HERE.

Blog Author: 
Jerry Thornton

Welcome to Friday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

Welcome to Friday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

MLB: Phillies at Red Sox, 7:10 p.m. (NESN; WEEI-FM)
MLB: Diamondback at Cubs, 2:20 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Twins at Astros, 8:10 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Pirates at Cardinals, 8:15 p.m. (MLB Network)
College football: Charlotte at Georgia State, 3:30 p.m. (ESPNU)
College football: Baylor at SMU, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College football: Fordham at Army, 7 p.m. (CBSSN)
College football: Michigan State at Western Michigan, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College football: Kent State at Illinois, 9 p.m. (BTN)
College football: Washington at Boise State, 10:15 p.m. (ESPN)
Soccer: Exhibition, Peru at United States, 7:30 p.m. (FS1)
Soccer: Euro 2016 qualifying, Germany vs. Poland, 2:30 p.m. (FS1)
Tennis: U.S. Open, 1 p.m. (ESPN), 6 p.m. (ESPN2)


— Count Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers among those pleased by Judge Richard Berman’s ruling Thursday that vacated Tom Brady‘s four-game suspension for Deflategate.

Rodgers, who has said he likes his football inflated on the higher end, spoke in general terms about Brady’s case and what it means in terms of taking some power back from the commissioner.

“I think it’s a good day for the players,” Rodgers told the Packers TV network from the sideline during his team’s preseason finale Thursday night. “I think that anytime we can get one of own back, that’s a good win for us. I think there is maybe a little bit of the, too much absolute power that frankly the players, we had a chance in 2011 to really make a difference in the CBA, and we didn’t. We left the commissioner in charge of a lot of those things, but our unions did a good job of appealing and helping our guys out.”

Meanwhile, Falcons owner Arthur Blank acknowledged that it might be time for the league to consider reworking the way it doles out discipline, implying that commissioner Roger Goodell might have to surrender some of his power.

“It’s not healthy for the NFL to be in the kind of litigious position that it’s been for last several years,” Blank told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “I think that the commissioner is working hard to hold up the respect and integrity of the game, the competitive balance of the game and the shield. Having said that, I think we have to find ways to get to a better place sooner with the NFLPA than the process that we’ve gone through.”

Added Blank: “This Deflategate thing — which isn’t about Deflategate any longer, it’s about what has been collectively negotiated for decades in terms of the commissioner’s responsibility in terms of disciplining players. If we have to look at that differently in today’s light, in today’s environment, as an ownership group we should be prepared to do that. The commissioner should be prepared to do that. … I think the commissioner and the ownership around the league have to be prepared to look at things, look at change, and change may be appropriate.”

— On the same day the NFL was getting its hat handed to it in the Deflategate ruling, the league suspended Broncos safety T.J. Ward one game for an incident last year, and the player is none too happy about it.

Ward was charged with misdemeanor assault and disturbing the peace for a May 2014 incident at a Denver strip club in which he allegedly threw a glass mug at a female bartender who told him he could not bring alcohol into the club. The charges eventually were dropped.

“I feel it’s really unfair,” Ward said. “I’m getting punished for being accused of doing something, not for doing something but being accused, and I’ve got to pay the consequences for it. And I just don’t feel the whole process is very fair.”

The tone of Ward’s comments to reporters contrasted with a statement from the team in which Ward apologized to the organization and its fans.

“I take full responsibility for the incident that occurred in May 2014 and am willing to accept the consequences of my actions by serving my one-game suspension,” the statement read. “Although I was never arrested and all charges against me were ultimately dismissed, I have no one to blame but myself for being in the predicament that evening.”

Added Ward: “I have learned from my mistakes and will continue to be a pillar in the community to make myself a stronger person and player for the Denver Broncos.”

Ward is the second Denver defender to be suspended for the opener against the Ravens on Sept. 13, joining Derek Wolfe, who will miss four games for violating the league’s substance abuse policy.

— The Rutgers football team, already with a cloud over its head due to an ongoing academic investigation, will be without five players for its opener Saturday against Norfolk State following their arrest and suspension.

One of the players, starting defensive back Andre Boggs, was charged in two home-invasion robberies in April and May.

The four others, starting cornerback Nadir Barnwell, defensive back Ruhann Peele, fullback Razohn Gross and starting defensive back Delon Stephenson, were charged with aggravated assault, riot and conspiracy to commit a riot for a fight in April in which a man suffered a broken jaw.

Barnacle is the player at the heart of the academic issue, as coach Kyle Flood allegedly called a faculty member about the player’s academic status. The school has been investigating the situation for about a week but has yet to make an announcement.

“I have no reason to believe I won’t be coaching on Saturday,” Flood said.

Flood, in his fourth season as head coach, said he does not believe the investigation is a distraction.

“I feel right now this has brought the team closer together,” he said. “I feel good about where the team is at mentally. Ultimately, we’re going to find out Saturday at 12 noon.”

ON THIS DAY TRIVIA (answer below): On Sept. 4, 2000, the Red Sox retired a former Sox player’s number for the first time in 11 years, with which legend taking his place among the all-time greats?

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “As I have said during this process and throughout his Patriots career, Tom Brady is a classy person of the highest integrity. He represents everything that is great about this game and this league. Yet, with absolutely no evidence of any actions of wrongdoing by Tom in the Wells Report, the lawyers at the league still insisted on imposing and defending unwarranted and unprecedented discipline. Judge Richard Berman understood this and we are greatly appreciative of his thoughtful decision that was delivered today. Now, we can return our focus to the game on the field.” — Patriots owner Robert Kraft, after Tom Brady’s four-game suspension was nullified in federal court

STAT OF THE DAY: 2 — Touchdown passes for Tim Tebow (vs. one interception) in the Eagles’ preseason finale, a 24-18 loss to the Jets on Thursday

‘NET RESULTS (mobile users, check the website to see the videos): Royals catcher Salvador Perez races over to make a sliding catch on a foul popup against the Tigers.

During a match at the U.S. Open on Thursday, Andy Murray takes a backhand from Adrian Mannarino off his back.

Vine star Logan Paul, a former standout high school athlete from Ohio, surprises New Yorkers by doing splits.

TRIVIA ANSWER: Catcher Carlton Fisk (27)

SOOTHING SOUNDS: Beyonce Knowles was born on this day in 1981.

Blog Author: 
Jerry Spar
Chris Villani and John Tomase discuss Tom Brady's suspension getting overturned by Judge Richard Berman and discuss in hindsight how obvious this should have been.
Mikey Adams and Lenny Megliola discuss the Thursday federal court decision to overturn Tom Brady's DeflateGate punishment.

Curt Schilling‘s suspension from ESPN has been extended to the entire season, including the American League wild card playoff game, the network announced Thursday.

Schilling was pulled off the network’s coverage of the Little League World Series and the Aug. 25 edition of Sunday Night Baseball after he retweeted a graphic that pictured Adolf Hitler and compared Muslims to Nazi-era Germans.


Above the graphic was a line that read: The math is staggering when you get to true #’€™s.

He acknowledged his poor decision and accepted the network’s punishment. The former Red Sox pitcher was back in the news this week when he wrote a harsh email to the website Awful Announcing and criticized a writer for misrepresenting the tweet and implying Schilling was comparing all Muslims to Nazis.

Said ESPN in a statement: At all times during the course of their engagement with us, our commentators are directly linked to ESPN and are the face of our brand. We are a sports media company Curt’s actions have not been consistent with his contractual obligations nor have they been professionally handled; they have obviously not reflected well on the company.  As a result, he will not appear on ESPN through the remainder of the regular season and our wild card playoff game.

Blog Author: 
Jerry Spar

Blog Author: 
Jerry Thornton
Now that the ruling has been overturned, Dale and Holley with Thornton check in with the legal analyst that was at the forefront of this case... SI's Michael McCann