Tags: bill belichick | deflated | ball | patriots | football

Bill Belichick: I Had 'No Knowledge' of Deflated Footballs at AFC Game

By    |   Thursday, 22 Jan 2015 01:11 PM

Bill Belichick told reporters at a Thursday morning news conference that he had "no knowledge" of deflated footballs during the AFC championship game between his New England Patriots and the Indianapolis Colts last week.

The Patriots' head coach found himself on the defensive after anonymous NFL sources came forward and said that they found that 11 of the 12 game balls used by the Patriots in their 45-7 blowout win over the Colts were below the required NFL regulations, according to ESPN. The balls reportedly met the standards when they were tested prior to the game.

SB Nation theorized that the Patriots could have intentionally deflated some of the balls to make them easier for quarterback Tom Brady to throw and for receivers to catch in the rainy conditions during Sunday's game.

"I came in Monday morning and was shocked to learn of the news report of the footballs," Belichick told reporters on Thursday, according to the New York Daily News. "I had no knowledge whatsoever of the situation until Monday morning . . . I had no knowledge of the various steps involved in the game balls and the process — that happened between when they were prepared and left the officials and went in the game. I've learned a lot about that."

Belichick insisted the topic of football air pressure has never come up with any of his players.

"I can tell you that in my entire coaching career, I have never talked with any player, staff member about football air pressure," he said. "That is not a subject that I have ever brought up. To me, the footballs are approved by the league and game officials pre-game and we play with what’s out there. That’s the only way that I have ever thought about that."

The NFL rules require footballs to be inflated to 12½ to 13½ pounds and states that the referee "shall be the sole judge as to whether all balls offered for play comply with these specifications," according to USA Today.

The NFL rule goes on to read that "a pump is to be furnished by the home club, 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."

The Patriots played at home Sunday at Gillette Stadium.

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Bill Belichick told reporters at a Thursday morning news conference that he had "no knowledge" of deflated footballs during the AFC championship game between his New England Patriots and the Indianapolis Colts last week.
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2015-11-22
Thursday, 22 Jan 2015 01:11 PM
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