A federal appeals court has ruled that New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady must serve a four-game Deflategate suspension imposed by the NFL, overturning a lower judge and siding with the league in a battle with the NFL Players Association.
"We hold that the Commissioner properly exercised his broad discretion under the collective bargaining agreement and that his procedural rulings were properly grounded in that agreement and did not deprive Brady of fundamental fairness," the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Monday in a 2-1 decision in New York.
The NFLPA and Brady can petition for a re-hearing in front of the same panel then the entire 2nd Circuit Court or take their appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. They would have to request a stay of Brady's suspension during the appeal.
The NFL has the option to implement the full suspension or attempt to reach a settlement and avoid further appeals.
The Angry Tom Strategy lives! Barring a successful appeal (unlikely), Brady will have to serve the four-game suspension in 2016. His ADP is currently in the 8th round, but is likely to take a hit as early drafters learn the news. Savvy owners can scoop up Brady in the 10th or 11th round, draft a backup in the later rounds (Tyrod Taylor?) and then enjoy Brady's production from Week 5 on.