U.S. Senator calls for NFL to release PSI numbers to help Tom Brady

If the NFL is going to punish Tom Brady for deflating footballs, then the league needs to prove that Brady and the Patriots actually deflate footballs.

That's the stance of U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), who is calling for the NFL to release its PSI findings from the 2015 season.

Shaheen took to Twitter on Thursday to let America know that she doesn't believe the league has any "credible evidence" against Tom Brady.

The PSI numbers of the footballs used during the AFC title game between the Patriots and Colts became the main point of contention early in Deflategate. Under NFL rules, a ball has to be inflated to at least 12.5 PSI.

When the Deflategate footballs were measured at halftime, almost every Patriots ball had a measurement lower than 12.5 PSI.

The Patriots argued that the drop was natural and due to the Ideal Gas Law, while the NFL argued that the Patriots deflated the balls on purpose, with Brady "generally aware" that it happened.

After the Wells Report was released, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell announced that the league would start checking the PSI level of footballs during pregame to make sure they conformed to the NFL's rules.

At the time, the NFL also announced it was going to take PSI measurements at halftime of several games in 2015 to see what happened to the PSI level of footballs during normal game play. Under the Ideal Gas Law, the PSI will fall if the game temperature is under 52 degrees.

Although many people believed that the NFL would release its PSI findings after the 2015 season -- something that could've helped the Patriots case if their Deflategate footballs matched up PSI-wise with footballs used in 2015 -- the league never released the numbers.

Back in February, Goodell said the NFL had never planned to release anything.

"The league did this year was what we do with a lot of rules and policies designed to protect the integrity of the game, and that's to create a deterrent effect," Goodell said. "We do spot checks to prevent and make sure the clubs understand that we're watching these issues. It wasn't a research study. They simply were spot checks."

In the Washington Post article that Sheehan links to in her tweet, author Sally Jenkins also calls for the league to release its PSI findings.

From the Washington Post:

This season, the NFL spot-checked inflation levels of footballs, and then refused to make the data public. There is only one conceivable rationale for not releasing it, and that’s because it makes the specious Wells Report look even more specious, and supports the account of the Patriots and consensus of mainstream scientists: The deflation level of the footballs was because of cold, wet weather and the effects of the Ideal Gas Law.

Basically, some believe it doesn't make any sense for the NFL not to release the numbers, unless the league has something to hide.

A U.S. Senator wants to help Tom Brady. (USATSI)
A U.S. senator wants to help Tom Brady. (USATSI)

CBS Sports Writer

John Breech has been at CBS Sports since July 2011 and currently spends most of his time writing about the NFL. He's believed to be one of only three people in the world who thinks that Andy Dalton will... Full Bio

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