An email from “Ted Wells, Esq.”

Here is an email I received from “Ted Wells, Esq.” (It’s not really from Ted Wells, and the only reason I want to make that clear is because I’m scared the all-powerful Roger Goodell will levy and arbitrarily harsh punishment.)

Dear Greg,

Please help me calculate a probability.  I have been asked to investigate whether Tom Brady and the New England Patriots have conspired to break the rules by using under inflated footballs.  This allegation was made by two different opponents in 2014 and has roots going back over 10 years according to AJ Feely, who allegedly played in the NFL.  Some background data for the probability I need you to calculate:  Based on data provided by Rotowire, Tom has handled 3399 snaps over the past 3 years, an average of almost 71 per game.  If we extrapolate from this to his entire career of 238 games including playoffs, he has handled approximately 16,898 snaps during NFL games.  And before every offensive snap the football is handled by a linesman, an NFL official, who places the ball on the line of scrimmage.

So here is what I need you to calculate:  What is the probability that the Patriots have been using under inflated footballs for an extended period of time, perhaps over a decade, perhaps almost 17,000 offensive snaps, when there have been zero – ZERO – instances in which a game official who handles both team’s footballs over 140 times per game noticed that a Patriots ball might be too soft?  I have also asked Warren Sharp to calculate this for me, but he currently is preoccupied trying to get a gob of peanut butter off the roof of his mouth.


Ted Wells, Esq.


Posted on May 22, 2015, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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