The NFL's annual meeting in Boca Raton, Florida came to a close today. We have seen rules changed and interviews held – most notably, from a Patriots perspective, by team owner Robert Kraft and his son and team president Jonathan as well as head coach Bill Belichick.
During the first of those interviews, Robert Kraft's, there was a mention of a letter written by Kraft asking NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell to reinstate the Patriots' two forfeited draft picks in the light of new scientific evidence (at least new to the league). It was a last-ditch effort – and it was not successful as Goodell confirmed today.
The commissioner held a press conference and, after talking about rule changes, fielded questions by some of the reporters in attendance. One of those reporters, the Boston Globe's Ben Volin, asked Goodell about Deflategate and Kraft's letter. Goodell responded as follows:
I did receive the letter from Robert a few weeks back. I also responded to him two weeks ago and told him that I did consider his views. I didn’t think there was any new information in there that would cause us to alter the discipline, and so there will be no changes to the discipline.
From his point of view Kraft's letter did not include any new information, or information that would be able to get the Patriots their draft picks back. Therefore, as Goodell put it, there will be "no changes to the discipline".
This does not come as a surprise. After all, Jonathan Kraft stated yesterday that "at some point you have to realize [getting the picks pack] is not going to happen". Kraft also said that the "best revenge" to the unjust punishments "will be putting the best team on the field this year and having a very successful season" – this will undoubtably be harder without a first round pick but the Patriots have shown in the past that they are able to deal with any type of added adversity.