After Robert Kraft laid down his arms yesterday in his fight against the NFL, there were a range of emotions. From anger and betrayal to shock and surprise. While some people even understood the move. Former Patriots wide receiver Troy Brown fit into that category.
I didn’t anticipate him giving up the fight on that one,” longtime Pats wide receiver Troy Brown told Karen Guregian of the Boston Herald. “I’m not sure if he had enough owners supporting him. I don’t know. I haven’t spoken to him, and I didn’t hear what he had to say.
“But it really isn’t a good look for the NFL, going back and forth about the PSI of a football. I think there are so many other great topics they can talk about. But it was turning into Wrestlemania.
He’s the owner. He knows what he’s doing. He knows first-hand. He’s been talking to Roger [Goodell] and the league,” said Brown, who won three Super Bowls with the Pats. “If he feels like it’s going to be a black eye for the league, I guess he’s making the right decision based on the business of the NFL, and not his team in the short run. . . .
“Well, you’ve got to get moving onto other stuff. You’ve got to get people ready to play for those four games [without Tom Brady], unless the suspension is shortened. So, I think it’s really important for them to focus. This team has been very good about that in the past, doing their job and not worry about things they don’t have control over. It’s definitely best to get going earlier, as opposed to later.
Whether on purpose or not, Brown is saying that Kraft is essentially adhering to the Patriot Way. The Patriot Way is essentially putting the needs of the team first. Keep quiet and avoid distractions. Decisions are based on whats best for the team in the long run, even if they don't make sense at the moment.
Kraft obviously looked at this situation and knew that this went against everything this team had been built on over the last 15 years. A long legal battle would keep this in the forefront of the news and serve as a huge distraction to the team while having a low chance of succeeding.
Kraft's decision needs to be compared to the ones of Trading Logan Mankins or cutting Lawyer Milloy right before the season. Both created a huge uproar with the fans who didn't understand the reasoning behind them but in the end it all worked out. There have been countless others like it to mention here but in the end, the Patriots remain competitive year in and year out. Kraft giving up the fight will probably be looked at the same way in a year or so.
In the end, Robert Kraft is one of the more successful owners and business men in the National Football League, he obviously feels like that this, while not what he wants to do, is what he has to do. He could fight it to the bitter end and destroy his brand and his team. Or he can cede defeat now and win in the long run.
Remember the original Patriots in the Revolutionary War lost many, many battles. Many times they were out gunned by the British and they retreated and lived to fight another day and in the end won the war. And that's what Kraft and the Patriots are doing here. They will fight the battle on their own turf where Roger Goodell won't be able to win. On the field while they are marching their way to ring number five.
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