The NFL's annual league meeting is taking place right now in Boca Raton, Florida and will see everyone from team owners to coaches to league officials discuss the rule changes and other important issues regarding the present and future of professional football in the United States.
One part of the future is not too far away: the 2016 NFL draft, which will see the New England Patriots without a first round selection because of the league's Deflategate punishments. Of course, given the way the investigation and its aftermath have been going down, the Patriots led by team owner Robert Kraft are still fighting to recoup the picks - something Kraft mentioned during his media availability earlier today.
New England's owner said that he wrote a letter to league commissioner Roger Goodell asking him to weigh new evidence (from the league's perspective), such as the Ideal Gas Law, and explaining reasons why the Patriots should get their two picks - a first this year and a fourth in 2017 - back. Kraft, who wrote the letter a month ago, did not talk about the response he got.
The only thing the 74-year old said is that he is "moving on from that" and that he and his organization have done "everything we can do" to get the picks back. Kraft still "pray[s] and desires" to get the selections back, although it looks like a long-shot given the NFL's history of sane and rational decisions and the fact that the league has opted not to share the results of its "spot checks" with anyone outside Park Ave.
Kraft also mentioned that he does not see "any momentum among [his] peers" putting pressure on the league to give the Patriots their selections back even though "they could be in a similar position".
One other interesting nugget from Kraft, who also spoke about being excited about the Patriots' offseason moves and Tom Brady's contract extension, was that he thinks that Goodell "has done a good job" as league commissioner. It has become rather clear by now that New England's owner does not blame Goodell for the mess that Deflategate has become, but rather those working under him (especially the NFL's lawyers).