If you didn't think it was possible for this to become more of a circus, you were wrong...
This morning, Chris Mortensen from ESPN backed out of an interview with WEEI (Boston's main sports station) after they planned on questioning Mort on his inaccurate tweet
that started this whole dumpster fire.
Mort's source said footballs were under-inflated by 2 PSI, when, in reality, either one or none of the balls measured that low (depending on the gauge used). Personally, I don't blame Mort for the original report if he thought his source was good. However, that the NFL never issued a correction (which they had done in the past in similar cases
), is extremely suspect. They had the facts, and chose not to set the record straight.
Regarding Mort's source, it was long speculated
that his source for the incorrect information was Mike Kensil, which was confirmed
today by the same radio station with which Mort canceled his appearance. Kensil was notified by the Colts
about their concerns regarding New England footballs before the AFC title game, but he took no precautions to make sure that everything was legit for that game.
Instead, he tried to catch the team in the act, going as far as to confront the Patriots' equipment manager
(not either of the Dorito Dinks) about it during the AFC Championship game.
Patriots sources are steadfast—and their belief was conveyed to the league, according to a source—that Mike Kensil, the NFL’s VP of game operations, walked up to Patriots equipment manager Dave Schoenfeld on the sideline after halftime and said, “We weighed the balls. You are in big f------ trouble.” New England and Kraft thought this incident, and others, showed bias by the league and would be explored in the Wells report. But the Patriots’ theories (including another in which they believed the Colts deflated the intercepted ball) were tossed aside, with the report simply calling the sideline interaction a difference in recollection.
Had the NFL acted correctly at the start, the footballs would have been documented, the Patriots would have been caught in the act with definitive proof
, and the team/players involved fined the amounts that have been levied in the past. Or maybe the chain of custody would have been stronger, and Bevis/Butthead wouldn't have had time to delate the footballs (if that's what happened), making this all moot, but Kensil tried to railroad them, and it blew up into all of this.
However, if Kensil were to turn over his cell phone, I bet we could get this sorted out pretty quickly.