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Schwab: NFL Overstepping By Saying Patriots Didn't Cooperate

BOSTON (CBS) -- The NFL showed everyone they weren't messing around on Monday, suspending Patriots quarterback Tom Brady for four games for his role in the Deflategate controversy.

The league also fined the Patriots $1 million and took away a 2016 first-round draft pick and a 2017 fourth-round selection.

While many are dancing with joy outside of New England, the Patriots and their fans are feeling a little mistreated. Ted Wells never proved any wrongdoing in his 243-page report, just that Patriots team employees likely deflated footballs and Brady may have known about it.

Based on that, along with the Patriots "lack of cooperation" during Wells' investigation and their history of toeing the line, the league determined that their punishment fit the crime.

Yahoo! Sports Frank Schwab agrees with Patriots fans though -- that the punishment is much too harsh without hard evidence.

"The Panthers and Vikings last November, playing a very cold game, TV cameras caught them by a heater heating up footballs. Nothing was done to them. You can argue the Patriots did a lot worse, but I think that's in the same scope, and we're talking about a warning versus and four-game suspension, a million dollar and two draft picks. I can't reconcile how the punishments were that much different," Schwab told 98.5 The Sports Hub's The Adam Jones Show on Monday.

Schwab really takes exception to the four-game suspension for Brady.

"Four-games is what you give steroid cheats with a positive test. Here we are with really no evidence on Tom Brady, it's all conjecture, and we're giving him the same as a steroid cheat? Costing him $2 million and doing irreparable harm to his legacy – let's not forget about this," added Schwab. "To do that without any evidence, I have a problem with that."

Schwab also takes issue with the league accusing the Patriots of not fully cooperating during the investigation.

"The Patriots did cooperate though, and I think that's the worst part of the whole announcement. That's just pandering," he said. "To put the Patriots failed to cooperate, that's the term they used, they cooperated in every way but two: When they asked for a fifth interview with (Jim) McNally, they said you've talked to him four times and he has a full-time job."

Schwab has no problem with Brady not wanting to show investigators his cell phone during his interview, as any good lawyer would tell him not to do so.

"They didn't have a subpoena and for an international celebrity to say no, I have no problem that. I don't think that presumes guilt," said Schwab. "They gave him the opportunity to give whatever texts he wants. He found that pointless. That's what Don Yee said, anyways.

"I still think saying failed to cooperate is for people who didn't read the report. They did cooperate, in a major way. They gave over employees, cell phone records, security footage and let dozens of their employees be interviewed. To say they didn't cooperate is really, really overstepping by the NFL," said Schwab.

Despite all this, Schwab doesn't think an appeal with get Brady back on the field before Week 6 in Indianapolis.

"I don't know that the NFL is going put itself in a position to have that happen. That almost means the Patriots were right," he said. "To say they made it four, so it gets reduced to two, I don't think the NFL wants to admit defeat in any of this."

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