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DeflateGate: Eleven Teams, Five Owners, Four Coaches, Two Executives Support Roger Goodell's Penalty

Want to know why Roger Goodell's position is completely safe? Here are all the teams who have come out in support of his penalty.

Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

Bob McNair, the owner of the Houston Texans, came out in support of NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell's excessive penalty on the Patriots for DeflateGate.

"Roger's doing a fine job," McNair said via the Houston Chronicle. "A lot of these issues, there's no way you can satisfy everybody. They're complicated, and you try to use your best judgment and do what you think is best for the game. And I think that's what he's trying to do."

McNair isn't the first voice in a place of team leadership to speak out in favor of Goodell. We dug through the archives to see what the owners, general managers, and coaches had to say about the Patriots and DeflateGate since January.

Openly Supports the Patriots

Patriots - A given,

The League Needs to Chill, But Penalty Warranted

Bengals - "What I'm saying is it lies within the league," head coach and competition committee member Marvin Lewis said at the Senior Bowl in January. "It's their responsibility. They are in the charge of the game."

Steelers - "I wouldn't put it on the scale of serious," said Steelers President Art Rooney II back in January.

Raiders - "I think there [was] an overreaction, from my standpoint,'' Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio said this May. "I think it was a little bit overdone."

Panthers - "I think more is being made out of it than needs to be," said head coach Ron Rivera took a lukewarm gamble with this statement back in January.

Firmly Against the Patriots

Bills - Honestly not sure where to put this one. Head Coach Rex Ryan was doing a fairly good job of staying out of the spotlight, until he came out and said, "I'm not feeling sorry for anyone." As a rival, he shouldn't- but we all know how he feels.

Dolphins - Vice Chairman Don Shula ignores his hypocrisy to take down the Patriots and to brag about his past achievements.

Jets - Glass houses sort of situation, where a repeat tampering offender of an owner gets only a $100k slap on the wrist, while his wife can't hide her excitement over the Patriots punishment.

Browns - "I lose a lot of respect for guys who cheat," head coach Mike Pettine stated earlier this month. Pettine also talked about how Tom Brady bragged at Wes Welker's wedding that the Patriots had the Jets playbook.

Colts - Everything and everyone.

Texans - As stated in the intro, the owner of the Texans is firmly on Goodell's side.

Broncos - General Manager John Elway supported Goodell's actions by stating, "The integrity of the game is No. 1. So the commissioner obviously felt that was compromised and did what he believed he had to do. I think what the commissioner does, he's done a tremendous job for this league and especially the growth that it's seen since he's been here so I support the commissioner 100 percent."

Cowboys - "I think he's doing a great job, and I'm a big supporter of his," Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said this May. "You can easily just follow the rules and you'll be all right."

Giants - "The National Football League has researched, investigated, done their work, and you have to believe that the league has done their due diligence," Giants head coach Tom Coughlin said this May. "And we stand by that."

Falcons - "The league feels a tremendous sense of responsibility, as do all the owners, in reinforcing the culture of the NFL, the shield and make sure the game remains as balanced and as pure and as true to its integrity and its ethics as can be done," Blank said to the Associated Press this May. "When they find any organization or any individual has gotten off those tracks, it's their job to remind them of that and bring them back on the tracks and do it in a way that really reinforces what the league is about. I think in the case of New England they have done that."

Seahawks - "I think this was an opportunity for the league to step up and do the right thing," Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll explained this May. "Nobody wants to play this game thinking that somebody has some kind of an advantage, players and fans alike, and so they did the right thing in following up on it,

N/A or Abstain

These teams have close personal ties to the Patriots: Chargers (owner Dean Spanos is close with Kraft), Chiefs (Andy Reid and Bill Belichick), Eagles (Chip Kelly and Bill Belichick), Buccaneers (GM Jason Licht is former Patriots employee), Saints (Sean Payton and Bill Belichick)

Other teams without comment: Jaguars, Titans, Washington, the entire NFC North, the NFC West sans Seattle

Ravens - Head coach John Harbaugh and company staying away after Ravens were rumored as a potential tip off for the DeflateGate investigation.


As would be expected, far fewer NFC teams had any comment to make in the open, while most AFC teams had leadership with an open opinion on the matter. The Raiders' Jack Del Rio is the only person high up in the team's structure to openly question DeflateGate since the days following the Colts game back in January, and even his statement was far from a ringing endorsement.

For as much as we'd like to cry that this is the downfall of Goodell (I'm definitely guilty), there have been a near-zero number of cases of teams in support of the Patriots in the wake of the Wells Report. The voices in support have been far stronger.

Luckily, the Patriots have eleven games against teams that have spoken out either in favor of the league's decision, or against the Patriots- so look for New England to have bulletin board material for at least eleven wins in 2015.