Tom Brady's appeal of his four-game suspension by the NFL went deep into overtime Tuesday night, lasting 11 hours before finally concluding at about 8:30.
As Jeffrey Kessler left NFL headquarters through a back exit on Lexington Avenue in Manhattan, the attorney representing the NFL Players Association said he believed the Brady camp "put in a very compelling case.''
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He also said Brady was "there to the bitter end'' of the hearing after having arrived at 9 a.m.
The four-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback was suspended for the first four games of the 2015 season after being implicated in the Wells Report that found the Patriots had used underinflated balls in the AFC Championship Game.
Brady is hoping to have his suspension erased or reduced.
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell will make that ruling after declining the union's request that he recuse himself.
The hearing was so crowded with lawyers and other principals that it was moved to a large meeting room in the basement of 345 Park Ave.
The sides worked into the night to conclude the hearing and avoid a second session that would have been held Thursday. Kessler said Goodell did not give him a timetable for a decision.
The scene outside NFL headquarters was crowded and chaotic, with television stations from Boston and New York and national outlets lining Park Avenue doing live updates.
Many fans waited on Lexington for a glimpse of Brady but were disappointed. He left from an undisclosed exit after the hearing.
Some fans wore T-shirts that urged the NFL to "Free Tom Brady.'' Early in the day, two young fans were spotted wearing replica Tom Brady jerseys, while another showed up in a Tim Tebow Jets T-shirt.
Adding to the strange, festival-like vibe outside the office building in which the hearing was held was a lunchtime concert by a band called the "Ebony Hillbillies.''
The stakes are high for Brady in the appeal. Not only is he looking to play early in the coming season but also to reclaim a legacy somewhat tarnished by Deflategate.
The Wells Report was built largely on circumstantial evidence, a point Brady and his team surely made during the long meeting on the NFL's home turf.