Was it worth it?
That was the question being kicked around the Giants locker room this week as they watched the punishment of a four-game suspension and the loss of draft picks (and the $1 million bucks) handed down to Tom Brady and the Patriots.
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"We had a little mini-debate about it," running back Andre Williams said Tuesday night at the 22nd annual Gridiron Gala to benefit the United Way of New York City. "The way I heard it explained [earlier Tuesday], they were like, a four-game suspension, is that worth a championship? Yes. So would somebody else do it again? Probably. I don't know."
The Giants running backs have an interesting view of the punishment and release of the report. Shave Vereen, the starting running back for the Patriots last season, signed with the Giants as a free agent this offseason.
"I was like, 'Hey Shane, what's going on?'" fellow running back Rashad Jennings said at the gala.
Neither Williams nor Jennings spoke for Vereen.
"I can't fault him for it because I play the same position as him and we don't really have any interaction with the footballs," Williams said. "We just carry it. I never really carried a deflated football, so I don't know if it makes a difference."
It's the quarterback who is most closely in contact with those footballs. And Brady who received the discipline.
"I'm not for or against Tom Brady, I don't know if he was really involved or what," Williams said. "Some people say if Tom Brady really was involved maybe it was a light punishment."
And, perhaps, worth it.
"I put it like this," Jennings said. "At the end of the day that's a good team. They won. I don't think nobody is questioning the talent on that team, I don't think they're questioning whether they won the Super Bowl or not. I think the question was: What ounce was the football? That's it."