Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
Cloudy 29° Cloudy

Tom Brady’s ‘Deflategate’ case now in appeals court

Associated Press

NEW YORK – NFL union lawyers who want New England quarterback Tom Brady to put “Deflategate” behind him for good are ready to make their pitch to three New York federal appeals judges.

NFL lawyers are asking the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan Thursday to reinstate a four-game suspension the league handed Brady. They said a lower-court was wrong to rule in September that the penalty could be lifted because the league bungled a probe of deflated footballs at the AFC Championship game in January 2015.

If the league wins, Brady may have to sit out the start of the upcoming season. If the union wins, it is likely he will play. Either way, the case is likely to be cited in labor law for years to come.

A ruling, unlikely for months, may hinge on obscure points of contract law that sports fans may find less interesting than the drama that has unfolded within the controversy.

In court papers, NFL attorneys have called U.S. District Judge Richard Berman’s Manhattan decision “inexplicable.”

In their filings, NFL Players Association lawyers said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell was making a “sweeping grab for power” when he upheld the four-game suspension in July.

Neither Goodell nor Brady will be in court Thursday. It is unlikely the court will rule for weeks.

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

Local journalism is essential.

Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.

Active Person

Subscribe to the sports newsletter

Get the day’s top sports headlines and breaking news delivered to your inbox by subscribing here.