Brady, Patriots Accused of Using Over-inflated Footballs to Win Super Bowl

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Tom Brady

Fresh off its controversy for allegedly using under-inflated footballs to win its AFC championship game two weeks ago, the New England Patriots are again under an ethical spotlight for allegedly using over-inflated footballs to beat the Seattle Seahawks 28-24 in last weekend’s Super Bowl XLIX matchup.

“We have very clear visual evidence that the New England Patriots used footballs that were inflated far above the regulation level of 12.5 to 13.5 pounds per square inch (psi) in their game last Sunday, so we are officially investigating this potential violation of National Football League rules,” says NFL Executive Vice President Jay Pesh. Over-inflated balls are considered easier to see, a potential advantage for a team like the Patriots, which relies heavily on its passing game.

Pesh wouldn’t disclose the visual evidence league officials have, but images provided by CBS, which broadcast the football game last Sunday, shows New England quarterback Tom Brady throwing balls that appear to be inflated above regulation levels.
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Both Brady and Patriots head coach Bill Belichick deny the allegation and say they’re being unfairly singled out because of the team’s dominance over the game over the last 15 years. In a statement issued jointly, Brady and Belichick say they won the game fair and square. “Our intent was to play a good game of football with a good football team, and we believe that’s what we did,” the statement says. “If there is reason to believe the balls were inflated above regulation levels, it’s up to the NFL to explain how such a thing could happen, since the official game balls were handled by the league and not by the Patriots.”

Pete Knowles, a Phoenix residence who attended the game Sunday, says it was obvious Brady “was cheating again,” because the balls he was throwing in the first 20 minutes of the game, which the Patriots dominated, were “clearly larger than the balls [Russell] Wilson [the Seahawks quarterback] were throwing. Brady’s balls were much bigger, and everyone knows it.”

But Bill White, who also attended the game, says it wasn’t clear Brady’s balls were bigger. “In the third quarter, when the Seahawks were walking all over the Patriots, no one was pointing to Brady’s balls and saying his were bigger.”

Even as the NFL looks into the allegation, questions remain over whether Brady’s balls were below regulation level in its AFC championship game against the Indianapolis Colts two weeks ago. Brady’s ball size dominated conversations in the media during the two-week period leading up to the Super Bowl and the league has yet to conclude its investigation and release a report.

“Too big? Too small? In the end, Brady’s balls will probably be determined to be just the right size,” says Ellen Mays, a fan of the Arizona Cardinals who attended the Super Bowl. “I look at him and that’s what I see: balls that are just the right size.”

This is a work of satire. It is fictional news article not meant to be taken seriously.Photos (some modified): jb and ds (Creative Commons). Not necessarily an endorsed use of images.

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