Earlier today, Judge Richard M. Berman threw out the National Football League’s four-game suspension of New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady. To put it mildly, the ruling was a major kick in the nuts for NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.
As Deadspin points out, the judge was not ruling on Brady’s guilt or innocence in regard to the Deflategate scandal. It’s completely possible Tom Brady is guilty as sin. The judge was simply ruling on the NFL’s “investigatory and disciplinary procedures,” which are completely ridiculous.
Here, though, are the three ways the judge ruled that the NFL fucked up:
1. The NFL didn’t properly inform Brady of the punishment he faced, or even what he was accused of.
2. The NFL didn’t let Brady’s camp question NFL executive and counsel Jeff Pash at his appeal.
3. The NFL didn’t give Brady’s side the opportunity to examine the evidence against him.
And if today’s decision isn’t enough to tell you the NFL’s house is completely out of order, just look at Goodell’s record when it comes to recent high-profile suspensions.
Roger Goodell’s suspensions have a history of being reduced after external review. pic.twitter.com/qLlLZjJH1y— NFL on ESPN (@ESPNNFL) September 3, 2015
Look at those numbers. Goodell is basically the Jacksonville Jaguars of suspending players.