More bad news for the embattled Patriots. On the heels of the Wells Report—the 243-page document that took 103 days to compile and nearly confirmed that there's a chance Tom Brady probably had a suspicion that an equipment manager released half a pound of air pressure out of footballs that Brady was otherwise permitted to doctor as he saw fit—another bombshell report, commissioned by the league, is due in the coming days.
Tad Wellz, who is not an attorney but does own Matlock seasons one and four on DVD, spent 1,553 days investigating another complaint brought against New England. During a 2010 preseason game, rookie punter Zoltan Mesko wore socks that were nearly a full inch short of his uniform pants, cutting down on wind shear and improving the aerodynamics of his kicking leg. It would be a flagrant violation of Rule 5, Section 4, Article 3 in the NFL rule book, which states, "Stockings must cover the entire area from the shoe to the bottom of the pants, and must meet the pants below the knee."
During a hastily called press conference in Foxborough, Mass., on Monday, coach Bill Belichick tried to explain away the latest scandal, which media on MySpace have dubbed #TheAsockalypse. He conceded that indeed, Mesko's socks did not meet his pants. But, after consulting with his sixth-grade science teacher, Belichick claimed that the socks were regulation when the team took the field against the Rams that day, however, the fabric shrunk in the extreme heat. "It's similar to the concept of when you put your hoodies in the dryer and they come out smaller because they've been in the hot air too long," said Belichick, who avoided the word "shrinkage."
A GM from an AFC team that wears blue-and-white uniforms who spoke under the condition of anonymity, says he has had enough of Belichick and friends playing by their own rules. "First Spygate, then Deflategate, now this," he said. "Not to mention, their offensive linemen hold all the time. And not by accident. They're taught to do it!"
Up next for Wellz: figuring out who piped in those boos when Goodell took the stage at the NFL draft. The investigation is expected to last into 2025. After that, it is more probable than not that the league will make itself generally aware of CTE among retired players.
GREG M. COOPER/USA TODAY SPORTS (MESKO)