1. Even though it rhymes, "deflategate" is a boring name. We should call it "ballgate".
2. The NFL requires that balls be inflated to a pressure between 12.5 and 13.5 psi. If you inflate a ball to 13.0 psi in an 85-degree room and then take it outdoors on a 50-degree day, the pressure will drop below 12.2 psi.
3. Aaron Rodgers claims that the refs themselves actually take air out of the balls. Weird.
4. The rule specifies that the refs check the balls exactly two hours and fifteen minutes before the game. As shown above, a team could inflate the balls with hot air and just let them deflate. This would appear to not violate the rules, although one could argue that it violates the spirit of the rules.
5. "The Referee shall be the sole judge as to whether all balls offered for play comply with these specifications" and "the balls shall remain under the supervision of the Referee until they are delivered to the ball attendant just prior to the start of the game." In other words, if the balls weren't properly inflated at halftime, any blame should fall on the Referee.
6. Troy Aikman has officially lost it, as proven by his absurd claim that "deflategate" is a more serious offense than "bountygate".
7. During the press conference on ESPN, Belichick came across as somewhat credible. However, when I listen to just the audio, I can hear serious stress in his voice. If I had to bet, I'd put my money on "Bill is lying". I don't think he ordered it, but he is so detail-oriented that I'm sure he was aware of the possibility that his staff might be doing something like this on a regular basis.
8. Nevertheless, I think it's unlikely we'll find any hard evidence against Brady or Belichick.
- Increase receptions and interceptions (and decrease incompletions). This would increase offense and scoring, and also increase the excitement and drama that comes from interceptions and pick sixes. These are all good things.
- Decrease fumbles. If fumbles went down by 40%, we would see teams shifting away from "average running backs who rarely fumble" (like BenJarvus Green-Ellis) and back towards dynamic superstars (like Barry Sanders). Again, this is good for the game.
- Decrease field goals. Flatter balls are harder to kick. The NFL has been bending themselves in knots trying to cut down on field goals, from changing where to put the ball after a missed field goal to fucking up the overtime rules. It would be much easier to just deflate the balls a bit.