#DFG: Canceling the Noise

Is there any level of suspension that you would advise Tom to accept?


  • Total voters
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wutang112878

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rodderick said:
Well, from the transcripts it seems Berman was a little more skeptical of the NFL's case than Brady's. The fact that he was so willing to dig into the facts surrounding the matter is encouraging, but that won't be the deciding factor in this case. 
 
Just my 2 cents, but we know Berman is pushing a settlement and my take is today was all about him trying to get to the sides to move towards that.  Reading between the lines, it seems he challenged the NFL's side more than Brady's which would make me believe he is trying to get the NFL to cave a bit.  So then the question becomes, and others have asked this before, whats better for Roger: to settle or to have the ruling go against them in court.  I think settling, with a reasonable settlement, leaves him with a dozen eggs on his face whereas losing in court is something he can spin from a PR standpoint and it seems pretty clear this whole thing is about PR for him.
 

twothousandone

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ElcaballitoMVP said:
I'm still worried the judge will defer to the arbitrator because of the CBA, but it was promising to see some of the questions the judge was asking today.
But he didn't ask a single question about Goodell's authority as arbitrator. Brady is leaning on notice and bias. Nash got in that the commissioner can suspend. There was no additional questioning on the limits to his power to suspend -- how can it be constrained. That's a key to Brady's argument, and it didn't get discussed at all.

I think (assuming he wants them to settle) he hammered the NFL on their weakness, but left the NFLPA alone on their big weakness. That's they way you get the NFL to move toward settlement, but it could suggest he didn't want to further weaken an already weak NFLPA hand.
 

TheRealness

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Mooch said:
After reading through the Tweets from the hearing, the NFL can't feel very good about their chances if this goes to Berman for a decision.
 
Well, according to my phone, Sal Pal said the Judge met "10 minutes longer with Brady" than the NFL. The insinuation of course being that the Judge wanted to give Brady a good talking to. 
 
If Judge Berman reverses it, does ESPN go hatchet job on him?
 

semsox

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Stitch01 said:
Sounds to me like Berman wants the NFL to move off of whatever they are offering in settlement and Kessler is positioning an offer of "Hey, Tom isn't going to admit wrongdoing with footballs, but he will say he made a mistake with how he dealt with Wells and pay a substantially larger fine than others have paid for the same offense"
 
This seems like a reasonable explanation for Kessler's 'apparent' give on certain issues. I could certainly see Brady offering to settle with a fine on the order of ~250k or so (as opposed to the meager fines for previous equipment tampering) and see that as a significant concession from their side. 
 

loshjott

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wutang112878 said:
 
Just my 2 cents, but we know Berman is pushing a settlement and my take is today was all about him trying to get to the sides to move towards that.  Reading between the lines, it seems he challenged the NFL's side more than Brady's which would make me believe he is trying to get the NFL to cave a bit.  So then the question becomes, and others have asked this before, whats better for Roger: to settle or to have the ruling go against them in court.  I think settling, with a reasonable settlement, leaves him with a dozen eggs on his face whereas losing in court is something he can spin from a PR standpoint and it seems pretty clear this whole thing is about PR for him.
 
I generally agree but I have a more (non-lawyer) negative take from a Pats fan perspective. Berman was hammering the NFL into a settlement because he's come to believe the NFL case is flimsy at best. However, he knows he'll have to defer to the CBA and find in the NFL's favor so he's trying to get some "justice" for Brady via a settlement before ruling against him.
 

genoasalami

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NFL is all in ...they are simply not going to agree to a settlement that is going to appease Brady..my feeling is they are going to roll the dice and hope Berman rules that despite the BS and their weak case ... the court has no power to over turn a case that was ruled under a CBA that both sides agreed to..
 

soxhop411

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Mike Garafolo ‏@MikeGarafolo  3m3 minutes ago
Kessler says if NFL imposed a fine on Brady like they did with Favre for not cooperating "we wouldn't be (cont) http://tl.gd/n_1sn8f7h 
 
 
 
 
 
Kessler says if NFL imposed a fine on Brady like they did with Favre for not cooperating "we wouldn't be here." But he argues they're seizing upon the destruction of the phone because there's "no legal basis" for what Goodell decided.
 

wutang112878

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loshjott said:
 
I generally agree but I have a more (non-lawyer) negative take from a Pats fan perspective. Berman was hammering the NFL into a settlement because he's come to believe the NFL case is flimsy at best. However, he knows he'll have to defer to the CBA and find in the NFL's favor so he's trying to get some "justice" for Brady via a settlement before ruling against him.
 
I get the sense of 'looking for justice' as well but now we are talking about a judge trying to impose his personal opinions over legal matters which I'd love in this case but I dont think thats what judges do.  The more we talk about this, the more I am convinced that I have no idea how to interpret what happened today.
 

BroodsSexton

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genoasalami said:
NFL is all in ...they are simply not going to agree to a settlement that is going to appease Brady..my feeling is they are going to roll the dice and hope Berman rules that despite the BS and their weak case ... the court has no power to over turn a case that was ruled under a CBA that both sides agreed to..
 
Yeah, not generally a good look to rely on a Court to say that it doesn't have the power to overturn a case.
 

mwonow

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No offense or anything, Theo, but this poll scares the crap out of me. 
 
On merits, the answer should be "vacated." and Berman's questions seem to support that. But I've been as wrong as I can be at each step in this process.
 
I don't want to be again. No vote from me!
 

BroodsSexton

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Corsi said:
 
Jim Armstrong ‏@JimArmstrongWBZ  16s16 seconds ago
Judge Richard Berman seemed to question the Wells report, using air quotes with his hands when he called it "independent".
 
 
Oh snap.  That is hilarious.  Also one of the problems with reading the transcript, after the fact.  There are many judges who are able to produce very clean transcripts, where their demeanor and non-verbal communication at argument conveys everything that they need to convey to the parties.
 

PedroKsBambino

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Stitch01 said:
Sounds to me like Berman wants the NFL to move off of whatever they are offering in settlement and Kessler is positioning an offer of "Hey, Tom isn't going to admit wrongdoing with footballs, but he will say he made a mistake with how he dealt with Wells and pay a substantially larger fine than others have paid for the same offense"
 
Agreed, the public questions are huge wins in aggregate for Brady and very worrisome if you are NFL.  Hard to read this other than as a sign for NFL to move.
 
I'd guess Brady is actually willing to pay almost any fine they name so long as there's no admission of guilt or suspension.   That may be why the 'admission of guilt' is so big for NFL....even at zero games they can say with a somewhat straight face they won if they get that ("we're constrained by CBA to only fine, that should be changed")
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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Marciano490 said:
Honestly, you're going to have a better chance counting cards in blackjack at a casino that shuffles 8 decks electronically than parsing a judge's questions for potential clues as to his final decision.
 
If the tweets are comprehensive, not pushing Kessler or even asking him a single question, about how he can prevail given the arbitration standards is impossible to see as anything but a good thing.
 
Does it mean Brady will win?  Of course not.  But you've now got multiple piece of information to help with an understanding of where this judge is -- he has given no indication whatsoever that he's going to give undue deference to the NFL or to arbitration standards. Maybe that's because at this point, those arguments don't fit his settlement agenda, but when you're the party going in to court trying to say, "you have no discretion but to rubber stamp," this is not welcome news.
 
If you're trying to read tea leaves to understand whether this judge is going to rule for Brady or the NFL, I agree entirely that we don't know based on today's questions.  If you're trying to read what the judge has done and said to date to know whether Brady is going to get a fair shake before a neutral, I think we have our answer, or at least are pretty close to having that answer.  He may be a dipshit, or not understand the facts, or botch something, or simply have a different judgment from what the rest of us might have, but after 7 months of a completely wired non-neutral process, and concern that getting this case to SDNY would mean more of the same, it's at least good news that we finally have someone who -- whatever his skills or strengths or weaknesses -- seems to get that his job is as a neutral.  That's a relief to me.
 

bakahump

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I asked awhile back.....Could the judge slam the NFL......but parse the decision in such a way that says "Yea this is a sham of a case....a real railroad job.....but because of the CBA Language I have to agree that Mr. Goodell has the authority to conduct a shoddy investigation and punish a player based on little more then his personal bias."
 
Hope thats not whats happening.  But if it is...and Brady gets 4.....I will enjoy every JG game.  And throw that decision in every haters face.
 

Joe D Reid

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Keep in mind that this was a settlement conference, not an oral argument. Assuming that the tweets are right and the judge pressed the NFL more than the PA, that could just mean that the judge perceives the NFL as having been more intransigent in the settlement talks to date. That's not the same as the judge thinking the PA has a better case.
 

BroodsSexton

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Joe D Reid said:
Keep in mind that this was a settlement conference, not an oral argument. Assuming that the tweets are right and the judge pressed the NFL more than the PA, that could just mean that the judge perceives the NFL as having been more intransigent in the settlement talks to date. That's not the same as the judge thinking the PA has a better case.

 
I was wondering about that actually--he wasn't taking argument on the submissions?  If not, the fact that he conducted the settlement conference out in the open is really admirable of him, and frankly also a good sign for Brady.  Sunlight is the best disinfectant, etc.
 

AB in DC

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Wait wait wait...who exactly is Stephen Brown?  And did Kevin Duffy get a transcript or something?  I'm getting a Sharks of Vegas vibe here.
 

bowiac

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bakahump said:
I asked awhile back.....Could the judge slam the NFL......but parse the decision in such a way that says "Yea this is a sham of a case....a real railroad job.....but because of the CBA Language I have to agree that Mr. Goodell has the authority to conduct a shoddy investigation and punish a player based on little more then his personal bias."
He can't say Goodell has the right to do it based on personal bias, but he can say Goodell can punish anyone for anything without regard for whether the player only expected a fine. That's probably the easiest decision for the judge to write. "You guys [the NFLPA, Kessler] were the dummies who entered into a CBA that let Goodell be the arbitrator. Other sports leagues have been smart enough to fight for an independent arbitrator, so you could have done the same."
 

loshjott

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bowiac said:
He can't say Goodell has the right to do it based on personal bias, but he can say Goodell can punish anyone for anything without regard for whether the player only expected a fine. That's probably the easiest decision for the judge to write. "You guys [the NFLPA, Kessler] were the dummies who entered into a CBA that let Goodell be the arbitrator. Other sports leagues have been smart enough to fight for an independent arbitrator, so you could have done the same."
 
This is what I'm expecting. 
 

ehaz

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AB in DC said:
Wait wait wait...who exactly is Stephen Brown?  And did Kevin Duffy get a transcript or something?  I'm getting a Sharks of Vegas vibe here.
 Manhattan Federal Court Reporter
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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I sincerely doubt Berman actually said that a "settlement" in favor of the NFLPA is a very real possibility.  If what they are reporting is that Berman said to the the NFL that a "ruling" in favor of the NFLPA is very possible, that's great news, although my guess is that he's also told Kessler that a ruling in favor of the NFL is "very possible."  That's what you say in settlement talks.
 
That said, to keep up with my theme, when you're the party going in to defend an arbitration award, you really don't want to hear that losing is something that's on the table.
 

hunter05

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AB in DC said:
Wait wait wait...who exactly is Stephen Brown?  And did Kevin Duffy get a transcript or something?  I'm getting a Sharks of Vegas vibe here.
You could click on his Twitter and read his description.
 

Leather

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DennyDoyle'sBoil said:
I sincerely doubt Berman actually said that a "settlement" in favor of the NFLPA is a very real possibility.  If what they are reporting is that Berman said to the the NFL that a "ruling" in favor of the NFLPA is very possible, that's great news, although my guess is that he's also told Kessler that a ruling in favor of the NFL is "very possible."  That's what you say in settlement talks.
 
That said, to keep up with my theme, when you're the party going in to defend an arbitration award, you really don't want to hear that losing is something that's on the table.
 
Again: I don't think he said that at all.  I think the word "said" there is meant to be figurative.  Like: "Berman's overall message from this hearing was that the NFL had better consider settling."
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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drleather2001 said:
 
Again: I don't think he said that at all.  I think the word "said" there is meant to be figurative.  Like: "Berman's overall message from this hearing was that the NFL had better consider settling."
 
Oh, so Tweedeldum and Tweedeldee speculating about what the judge's questions mean in terms of settlement?
 
Yeah, right, not worth particularly much.