NFL commissioner Roger Goodell still doesn’t have exact details about the release of Ted Wells’ report about the Patriots and Deflategate. But the NFL just might be getting close to the finish line.
Goodell, appearing in a segment Tuesday morning with CBS This Morning’s Charlie Rose, said Wells still has not been given a timeframe for releasing the report of his nearly four-month-long investigation, but “I expect it will not be long.”
“You want to make sure you have all the information,” Goodell said. “What we’re trying to do is just make sure we’re thorough.”
The crux of Wells’ report, Goodell said, will be, “Was there a violation of the rules, and if so, how did that occur?”
Goodell said one of the issues Wells likely explored was whether the deflated ball issue happened only in the AFC Championship Game, or whether it occurred more often.
Wells’ investigation began in the days following the Patriots’ 45-7 win over the Colts on Jan. 18, and will reach day 100 later this week.
Wells and his investigators made several trips to Gillette Stadium to conduct dozens of interviews with Patriots full-time and part-time game-day employees over the past three months. Wells has Goodell’s authority to release a thorough, independent report, and Tuesday’s interview was the first time Goodell said anything substantive about the report’s release date.
“I do think it will be soon,” Goodell reiterated. But “we have a responsibility to the 32 teams, not just the one team, to 32 teams, and our fans, and the general public here, to make sure things we’re done fairly.”
Follow Ben Volin on Twitter at @BenVolin.