A federal judge in Manhattan has ordered New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady and the NFL commissioner to attend in person two settlement conferences in August to try to resolve the 'Deflategate' controversy.
U.S. District Judge Richard Berman told the two sides he was scheduling a conference for Aug. 12 "with your principals [including, without limitation, Mr. Goodell and Mr. Brady]," and another one for Aug. 19 if the dispute isn't settled.
Brady was suspended for four games after the NFL concluded that he was at a minimum generally aware that Patriots staffers were tampering with the air pressure of footballs at the AFC championship game against the Indianapolis Colts in January.
The NFL has asked the federal court to confirm that discipline under the collective bargaining agreement between the league and players, and the players union has asked the court to overturn it.
Both sides have told Berman they want the dispute resolved by Sept. 4, a week before the Patriots' first game, and Berman has issued orders twice this week urging the two sides to tone down their rhetoric and try to settle the dispute.