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The 2015 AFC Championship Game football tampering scandal, commonly referred to as Deflategate was a National Football League controversy involving the allegation that the New England Patriots tampered with footballs used in the American Football Conference Championship Game against the Indianapolis Colts on January 18, 2015. The league announced on May 11, 2015, that it would suspend Patriots quarterback Tom Brady for four games of the 2015 regular season for his alleged part in the scandal. After NFL commissioner Roger Goodell upheld the suspension in an internal appeal, the matter was moved to federal court. On September 3, 2015, Judge Richard M. Berman vacated Goodell's four-game suspension of Tom Brady, due to legal deficiencies such as inadequate notice to Brady, denial of the opportunity for Brady to examine a lead investigator, and denial of equal access to investigative files. On April 25, 2016, the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reinstated Brady's four-game suspension for the 2016 regular season. After losing a request for a rehearing, Brady announced on July 15 that he would not appeal further and would accept the suspension.

2015 AFC Championship Game football tampering scandal
Gillette Stadium02.jpg
Gillette Stadium, the site of the game
1 2 3 4 Total
IND 0 7 0 0 7
NE 14 3 21 7 45
Date January 18, 2015 (2015-01-18)
Stadium Gillette Stadium, Foxborough, Massachusetts
Favorite Patriots by 7
Referee Walt Anderson
Attendance 68,756
TV in the United States
Network CBS
Announcers Jim Nantz and Phil Simms

The 2015 AFC Championship Game football tampering scandal, commonly referred to as Deflategate was a National Football League (NFL) controversy involving the allegation that the New England Patriots tampered with footballs used in the American Football Conference (AFC) Championship Game against the Indianapolis Colts on January 18, 2015. The league announced on May 11, 2015, that it would suspend Patriots quarterback Tom Brady for four games of the 2015 regular season for his alleged part in the scandal. After NFL commissioner Roger Goodell upheld the suspension in an internal appeal, the matter was moved to federal court. On September 3, 2015, Judge Richard M. Berman vacated Goodell's four-game suspension of Tom Brady, due to legal deficiencies such as inadequate notice to Brady, denial of the opportunity for Brady to examine a lead investigator, and denial of equal access to investigative files. On April 25, 2016, the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reinstated Brady's four-game suspension for the 2016 regular season. After losing a request for a rehearing, Brady announced on July 15 that he would not appeal further and would accept the suspension.