There should be no need for this column. In fact, I am embarrassed to an extent that “deflate-gate” has gotten so bad that, with just mere days until Super Bowl XLIX, the story being told is about deflated footballs.
And I am only perpetuating this nonsense by giving in and writing this story, but something needs to be said. And there is a litany of things to be said about this garbage that has overshadowed what could be one of the best Super Bowl’s in recent memory and has tarnished the image of the National Football League.
Let’s start with the name of this supposed controversy: deflate-gate. Adding “gate” to the end of any controversy is a callback to the Watergate scandal, which means that we have equated the deflation of footballs to one of the most corrupt political acts in this country’s history, no?
That is complete and utter nonsense.
Rewind to last week (and still going on at times this week) and most every major news station is leading with this story.
Deflated footballs are not major news.
The fact that this story has gotten to such a childish level, I will never understand. After a day or two where so many different reports from “trusted sources” kept showing conflicted stories, I lost all hope in finding out what really happened in that locker room the night of the AFC Championship.
And to be perfectly honest, I do not really care.
Leaving the fact that we do not truly know if the footballs were deliberately underinflated or not aside, the Indianapolis Colts still scored an abysmal seven points, LeGarrette Blount still ran for 148 yards for three touchdowns, the Patriots still ran four more designed rushing plays than pass, and the Patriots scored more and passed more in the second half when the deflated balls had been confiscated.
Deflate-gate is a product of Patriots naysayers throwing mud at the wall. I have not yet, and likely never will, heard a good argument as to why this story has evolved into where it currently stands.
That is not to say that there is not a case here. If the Patriots did deliberately deflate the footballs (which recent reports pointing towards a locker room attendant are making that claim less believable), then they should be appropriately punished. Whether that is a loss of a draft pick, a fine, or something else practical is the League’s decision. But the claims that Bill Belichick should be fired or that the Colts should have the right to play in the Super Bowl is beyond laughable.
It seems like punishment enough that the Patriots had to devote as much time as they did to this investigation during time that should have been devoted to preparing for the biggest game of the season, and that Belichick and Tom Brady, among so many others, have had to give press conferences on an issue that had so many conflicting reports that the League even had no clue what was going on.
This case has been an absolute joke and travesty since it was first brought up. It has led to horrendous reporting and investigating and has cast a shadow on what should be an incredible game.
With that being said, with the conclusion of this article, I know that I am onto the Super Bowl. I have been for a while, but with this article I took a reprieve from discussing this “controversy.” But now it is time to look forward to the marquee matchup we have ahead of us on Sunday.
Don’t let this nonsense deflate how you feel about football, it’ll blow over. It should not have been an issue in the first place, but it is. Let it run its course, just like anything else, and in due time it will be forgotten.