The NFL has suspended New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady for 4 games over his involvement in Deflategate, according to multiple media reports.
The Patriots organization was also fined $1 million and stripped of its first-round draft pick in 2016 and its fourth-round draft pick in 2017.
Brady will miss the season opener against the Pittsburgh Steelers, as well as games against the Buffalo Bills, Jacksonville Jaguars and Dallas Cowboys. He will return in Week 6 (the Patriots have a bye during Week 4) for a Sunday Night Football matchup against the Indianapolis Colts, the same team that started Deflategate.
Brady’s suspension will snap his 13-season streak of starting at quarterback for one team on opening day, which is the fourth-longest in NFL history.
Investigator Tom Wells said in his NFL-commissioned report on Deflategate that “”it is more probable than not” that Brady knew the balls his team was using were under-inflated.
The Wells Report also stated that two Patriots officials, Jim McNally and John Jastremski, “participated in a deliberate effort to release air from Patriots game balls.” The report suggested it was likely that Brady knew of the plan.
“Based on the evidence, it also is our view that it is more probable than not that Tom Brady was at least generally aware of the inappropriate activities of McNally and Jastremski involving the release of air from Patriots game balls,” the report reads.
The controversy began after the 2014 AFC Championship game in which the Patriots defeated the Indianapolis Colts. Reports indicated that the NFL was investigating the Patriots for using balls that were not fully inflated during the game.