Robert Kraft, the Jewish owner of the New England Patriots, criticized the National Football League for suspending Patriots’ star quarterback Tom Brady for the first four games of the upcoming season.
In a statement on July 29, Kraft said that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell’s decision on July 28 to uphold Brady’s suspension was “unfathomable.”
Brady is accused of participating in a scheme—now referred to as “Deflategate”—in which air was let out of footballs that were used in the January 2015 AFC Championship Game and of obstructing an NFL investigation, including by destroying his cellphone.
The National Football League and the NFL Players Association have both filed federal lawsuits in the case. Kraft said in his statement that he would not speak again about the issue until the end of the legal proceedings.
Kraft told Patriots’ supporters that he was sorry for not taking the issue to court when it first came to light earlier this year.
“I want to apologize to the fans of the New England Patriots and Tom Brady. I was wrong to put my faith in the league,” he said. “Personally, this is very sad and disappointing to me.”
Kraft is the main benefactor of football in Israel, where he has sponsored the Kraft Family Israel Football League and funded the construction of the Kraft Family Stadium in Jerusalem.
In June, Kraft led a mission to Israel of 19 Pro Football Hall of Famers.