FOXBORO, Mass (WPRI) — New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is hoping the NFL will change their mind on a four-game suspension in the fallout of “Deflategate,” but one thing that that won’t change is the unwavering support of his fans.
Brady traveled to NFL headquarters in New York City Tuesday to plead his case before Commissioner Roger Goodell. The league handed down the suspension last month after a league-sanctioned investigation found Brady allegedly had knowledge that footballs were intentionally deflated during the AFC Championship in January.
Dozens of supporters were gathered outside league headquarters during the more than 10-hour hearing, many holding signs and donning “Free Brady” t-shirts. Others were at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, where Brady’s jersey remains front and center inside the team’s Pro Shop.
One fan believes the NFL should clear Brady of all charges, saying he was targeted because of his team’s winning ways.
“I think Brady is one of the best quarterbacks ever to live, and I think he has a lot more to accomplish,” said Dominick Largo. “I don’t think he deserves what he is getting, and it’s because of the franchise is so successful. That’s an opinion from a New Yorker.”
Charlotte Tavares of Pawtucket doesn’t think Brady did anything wrong, but either way – she said there’s not enough evidence against him to uphold the suspension.
“I don’t think something like that will hold up in court,” she said. “The evidence is still missing.”
Regardless of the outcome of the case, fans said the appeal will only give the three-time Super Bowl MVP more motivation on the field.
“It’s only four games, and we’ll feel better when we win the Super Bowl again,” said Jimmy Land of Boston.
Along with Brady’s suspension, the Patriots were also fined $1 million and docked a pair of future draft picks.